Felicia Donceanu – The cycle of lieds Three songs for Til on lyrics by George Călinescu
Keywords:Felicia Donceanu, lied, analysis, poetics, performance
Born on Moldavian soil, on January 28, 1931, in Bacău, the composer Felicia Donceanu completed her musical studies at the “Ciprian Porumbescu” Conservatory in Bucharest, under the high supervision of some already established personalities of Romanian music. She composed for various genres, from instrumental theater, children's music, to chamber music, stage music, vocal-symphonic, choral, thus exhibiting, with exquisite skill, her mastery of laying down the notes on the musical scale. With a special love for Romanian poetry and literature and beyond, Felicia Donceanu dipped her writing pen in ink to give voice to her music and through the power of her own words. Authentically feeling this vein of poetic art, she also stood out with texts dedicated to various choral works of Romanian composers. She wrote scripts for various musical-choreographic performances, or radio dedicated, and with her painting talent she gave life to illustrations in children's books. As for the admiration that Felicia Donceanu gives to the distinguished man of culture, George Călinescu, it is drawn in two directions, holding a profound respect for the originality of the personality and the works of this illustrious representative of Romanian culture and literature, who ravished souls and became a source of inspiration, both for the young students of the Faculty of Letters and for people of culture in general. It is not surprising that Felicia Donceanu found in the creation of the poet George Călinescu a never-ending source of inspiration. In 1964, the cycle Three songs for Til was born, including the lieds: The Steps, The Leaf and The Living Water. It is based on the love poem structured and rendered in three different forms from a poetic and compositional point of view. Felicia Donceanu thought of the three lieds, in a “suite in pre-classical style: gavotte (The Steps), saraband (The Leaf) and courant (The Living Water)... each of them being doubled by meanings close to popular creation... in the first one, the game..., in the second one, the romance (with depressive, chromatic accents) and in the third one, the enchantment” (Constantinescu, 1966, p. 24). The musical interpretation of the poems is not a simple metaphorical game, the musical character of the poems, in general - far from being just an ornament - being part of the act of creation necessary for a fair reception, because it is created in a certain mood and a special tension of tone, and the reader or listener will have to perceive it in the same tension and texture. The quality of the sound, the form and the point of crystallization of the feeling make up an act of creation and not a borrowing, made by the poet or performer, from life. Poetry is the intimate form of creation, the acquired vocal timbre that identifies itself entirely with the musicality of the content.
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