So much really beautiful music has been written for Good Friday that if I shared all my favourite pieces on that day, you’d still be listening to it by Easter morning. (You will find that I’m sharing *quite a lot* of music on Good Friday in any case.) In order to fit a little more Good Friday music into this calendar, I’ve decided that every Friday in Lent is a good Friday for playing Good Friday-ish music.
I apologise for that sentence, I am writing this after midnight and getting silly.
For today, I wanted to share Tchaikovsky’s beautiful piece, Legend. Its lyrics feel as though they come from the genre of what I think of as medieval Bible fanfic songs (the cherry tree carol being probably the most famous of these), in which people who didn’t read or speak Latin made up likely-seeming stories about characters in the Bible… but in fact, there is nothing medieval about this. Tchaikovsky got the lyrics from a poem by Richard Henry Stoddard, a 19th century American poet. Apparently, they were translated into Russian by Aleskey Pleschcheyev, and then Geoffrey Dearmer translated the song back into English, changing the words so that they scanned with the music. You can find all the versions of the poem here.