Cantata de dol i del llum (Cantata of grief and light)

Soprano, SATB, piano, clarinet, cello
Duration: 11’42’’
Lyrics: Maria Victòria Oliva, Jordi Sala

Comment by the composer

«Dedicated to the memory of Maria Victòria Oliva de Cantavella, psychoanalyst and professor at the Faculty of Psychology in Barcelona University. First performed in March 2013 in the Paranimf Hall of Barcelona University, this piece collects the feelings and emotions of many of her students or followers.

The work starts with a short poem written by Maria Victòria Oliva de Cantavella in her youth, followed by a longer poem written by Jordi Sala.»

Text (catalan version)

Oh, nit, dolça d’estels, rossa de lluna. Oh, tendra plenitud, vida rodona.
(M. V. Oliva, 1938)

I
Plenitud tendra d’inquieta mirada. Obre encisada camins cap a la fosca, senders que vol comprendre.

II
Una penombra on respirin gardènies, un solell plàcid on madurin llimones, i, amics, bones estones!

III
Plena de lluna, de nit, d’estels ben plena. La llum serena acuita, atrapa i dóna paraules d’una en una.

IV
Una penombra per la conversa encesa, que en retrobar-nos tot petit cor s’eixampla. Ho sap, l’aire, i ho escampa.

V
Els qui sembraven prenien paciència per la collita. Hora foscant gaudien del fruit. I els confortava.

VI
Mira astorada, també agraïda i plora. Vells camarades, com els uneix encara el ressò d’aquells dies.

English version (Sam Abrams)

Oh night, sweet with stars, yellow with moonlight. Oh gentle plenitude, full, round life.
(M. V. Oliva, 1938)

I
Gentle plenitude with an unsettled look. Inroads to darkness, paths wanting insight.

II
The shade where gardenias draw breath, mild sunlight where lemons ripen, and, friends, good times!

III
Full of moonlight, full of nighttime, so full of stars. The peaceful light stirs, ensnares and yields words one at a time.

IV
Shade for the lively conversation, where, as we meet again, all meager hearts expand. The breeze knows and spreads the word.

V
Those who were sowing patiently awaited the harvest. At nightfall they enjoyed the fruit. It comforted them.

VI
Look amazed, and grateful too and shed tears. Old comrades, how the echo of those days still brings them together.