Three Songs
to texts by Aaron Schaffer
voice and piano
Year Composed
  • World: Austin, TX, November 4th, 1986 (Darlene Wiley, David Garvey)
Related Persons
Publishing Status
Not Published **one or more member works are available in Four Early Songs (2000)
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  • As a young man, Copland had an intellectual friend, Aaron Schaffer, who was a poet. Copland set three of his poems to music: Night, A Summer Vacation, and My Heart is in the East. Among Copland's earliest pieces, these short songs are traditional in style with occasional touches of Debussy and Ravel, the "modern" music of the times. The fourth song in the grouping is a two-page setting of a poem by John Duncan, titled Alone. It was discovered in Copland's files by Vivian Perlis and premiered by Jan DeGaetani.

    Vivian Perlis
  • Copland wrote three songs to texts by Aaron Schaffer in 1918: “My Heart Is in the East,” “A Summer Vacation,” and “Night.” Separately, he wrote the song Alone (1922, text by E. P. Mathers). When celebrating the Copland centennial in 2000, Boosey & Hawkes decided to publish these previously unpublished works together, giving them the name Four Early Songs.

    Note: "Alone" also exists in a version for voice, piano, and viola, as well as in a version for voice and orchestra. See: Alone (voice, piano, and viola) (1921) and Alone (arr. voice and orchestra) (1923).