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David Lang

Publisher: G. Schirmer

i live in pain (2010)
Text Writer
the composer (after contessa de dia)
Red Poppy
Chorus a cappella / + 1 instrument
Year Composed
4 Minutes
SSA a cappella
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Programme Note
David Lang i live in pain (2010)
January 2, 2011

David Lang (after Contessa de Dia)

Composer Note:

I wrote i live in pain as a present for my friends Donald Nally and the excellent Philadephia chorus ‘the crossing.’ The piece is a love song, and the text describes an intense longing for a lover who is no longer there. I was inspired to write the text by my attempts to read the works of the 12th century troubador, Beatriz de Dia, often referred to as the Contessa de Dia, probably the most famous woman troubador. I say my ‘attempts to read’ because she wrote in medieval Occitan, the antiquated version of a regional language of a small area in Southern France, which I don’t speak or read. Luckily I found a translation of some of her texts into Italian, which I also don’t really speak or read, but which I know at least well enough to push me in the direction of the text I finally made.

— David Lang

Sample Pages

  • Ensemble
    Lorelei Ensemble
    Beth Willer
    CD Baby:
The most successful work was the new I live in pain, written for Nally's 50th birthday. Inspired by 12th-century Contessa de Dia's verse in which longing for her lover takes dark, desperate turns, it illustrated the emotional precision that's possible in Lang's brand of minimalism.
David Patrick Stearns, The Philadelphia Inquirer,04/01/2011
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