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instrumentation: SATB choir and piano


00:00 / 04:48


Elizabeth Drew Stoddard’s poem “November” beautifully weaves together the many moods and qualities the autumn season evokes. The main theme, a lush and yearning melody, reflects sadness and loneliness. The harmonic progression thickens through added dissonances to capture the many colors of a harvest landscape. The embellishing motifs that occur at various times exhibit the remaining leaves yet to fall. The intensity and momentum increase and decrease along with the text’s content through the dynamics, vocal layering, and rhythmic complexity. The acapella voices at the end of the piece feel like a cool breeze in November. These elements link to manifest the contrasting tint of November’s beauty and solemnity and there is still a foreshadowing sense of optimism toward the upcoming winter season and the “Christmas cheer.”

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