Lydia Kakabadse: Haunted Houses – for mezzo soprano or alto and piano (NXP130)
This is a sheet music edition of Haunted Houses by the composer Lydia Kakabadse.
Sheet music for mezzo soprano or alto and piano
Music: Lydia Kakabadse
Words: Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807–1882)
Score: 8 pages
Somewhat minimalistic in style, the ghostly tale is taken from Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s poem of the same name and makes much use of the piano’s very low and high registers, giving rise to an eerie and mysterious effect.
Despite references to the harmless phantoms and quiet, inoffensive ghosts, the feeling of restlessness and unease throughout cannot be shaken off. Centring round the double harmonic scale of D minor, the piece ends as mysteriously and unexpectedly as it began.
All houses wherein men have lived and died
Are haunted houses. Through the open doors
The harmless phantoms on their errands glide,
With feet that make no sound upon the floors.
We meet them at the door-way, on the stair,
Along the passages they come and go,
Impalpable impressions on the air,
A sense of something moving to and fro.
There are more guests at table than the hosts
Invited; the illuminated hall
Is thronged with quiet, inoffensive ghosts,
As silent as the pictures on the wall.
We have no title-deeds to house or lands;
Owners and occupants of earlier dates
From graves forgotten stretch their dusty hands,
And hold in mortmain still their old estates.
The spirit-world around this world of sense
Floats like an atmosphere, and everywhere
Wafts through these earthly mists and vapours dense
A vital breath of more ethereal air.