I. Skeltonics II. Iambic Pentameter III. Alcaics IV. Paradelle V. Pantoum
Instrumentation: Flute, Oboe, Clarinet in B-flat, Bassoon, Horn in F, Trumpet in C, Tenor Trombone, Tuba
Completed February 2019, Norman, Oklahoma.
Each movement of my Poetic Suite is based on a poetic form or device which I have adapted to apply to musical parameters. Lines of poetry have become musical phrases; the rhythms of speech transformed into the rhythms of music; rhymed syllables reimagined as repeated motives.
Skeltonic Verse is a style of poetry composed of short, tumbling lines, each of which end with the same rhyme.
Each line of Iambic Pentameter consists of five groups of two syllables in an unstressed-stressed pattern.
Alcaics is a Greek form recognizable by its distinct rhythmic structure, consisting of irregular groups of two and three syllables.
Contemporary poet Billy Collins describes the Paradelle this way:
The paradelle is one of the more demanding French fixed forms, first appearing in the langue d’oc love poetry of the eleventh century. It is a poem of four six-line stanzas in which the first and second lines, as well as the third and fourth lines of the first three stanzas, must be identical. The fifth and sixth lines, which traditionally resolve these stanzas, must use all the words from the preceding lines and only those words. Similarly, the final stanza must use every word from all the preceding stanzas and only those words.
In reality, Billy Collins invented the paradelle himself, and intended it as a joke. Paradelles tend to sound quite ridiculous, but when adapted musically, the form takes on a much more rigorous quality.
A Pantoum is composed of several four-line stanzas, in which the first and third lines of each stanza become the second and fourth lines of the next.
3/9/19 - Jacob Frost Master's Recital, Pitman Recital Hall, University of Oklahoma
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