Piangerò la sorte mia

(2018) 10' / for female voice and six instruments
Text: Niccola Francesco Haym (1678-1729)

Written for Anne-May Krüger and the ensemble neuVerband and premiered by them on the 28th of January, 2019 in Basel, Switzerland.

Composer's note

My composition for mezzo-soprano and six instruments, Piangeró la sorte mia, like the aria of the same name for Cleopatra in Giulio Cesare in Egitto (1723) by Georg Friedrich Handel, is based on a text from Nicole Francesco Hamm. Direct and unpretentious, the music is intended to be a vehicle for the singer‘s expression and virtuosity, as the tradition is. Without quoting a note of his music, I follow the ductus and form of Handel‘s aria: A-B-A‘, slow-fast-slow. If some listeners hear a bit of Handel while listening to my Piangeró,that would be an unintended but acceptable additive, and certainly better than thinking of their tax return or if the babysitter is doing the dishes. Written for the singer Anne-May Krüger and the Basel ensemble neuVerband, Piangeró la sorte miais dedicated to persons who find themselves in a „worry-don‘t-be-happy“ moment in their lives. I would like to say to them, go ahead and cry, wail, be full of despair (part A). Sooner or later there will be a sliver of hope, even if it is in the disguise of revenge (part B). And if you still feel the urge to worry and whine, then have a second portion (part A’). – Mike Svoboda, January 2019


Female Voice
Alto Flute
Clarinet in Bb, also Bass Clarinet in Bb
Timpano 28-29”
2 Rins in b-flat and g
Ice Bell Cymbal 18” (Dome Cymbal, Button Gong, or something similar)


The text for Piangerò la sorte mia is taken from Nicola Francesco Haym’s libretto to Giulio Cesare in Egitto HWV 17 (1723) by Georg Friedrich Handel, more specifically, from an aria for Cleopatra in the 3rd act. However, no reference to Handel’s music is made.

Piangerò la sorte mia,
sì crudele e tanto ria,
finché vita in petto avrò.

Ma poi morta, d'ogn'intorno
il tiranno e notte e giorno
fatta spettro agiterò.

I will lament my destiny,
so cruel and so unfortunate,
as long as my heart beats.
But when I am dead,
from all sides my ghost will haunt
the tyrant both night and day.
(translation Anna Maria Pherson)

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