Midsummer (Leanne Daharja Veitch)

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  • (Posted 2011-03-21)  CPDL #23290:     
Editor: Leanne Daharja Veitch (submitted 2011-03-21).   Score information: A4, 5 pages, 68 kB   Copyright: Personal
Edition notes:

General Information

Title: Midsummer
Composer: Leanne Daharja Veitch

Number of voices: 5vv   Voicing: SSATB
Genre: SacredPagan music

Language: English
Instruments: A cappella

First published: 2004

Description: First release of movement 7, "Midsummer" from "Wheel of the Year" as a separate work.

What is Midsummer?

Midsummer, also known as Litha, is the time of the year when the days are longest and the nights shortest. The colors of the season are red and gold, representing heat and ripe fruit, and fruit is eaten in thanks.

Midsummer is celebrated on the 21st and 22nd of December in the Southern hemisphere, and on the 21st and 22nd of June in the Northern hemisphere. It is associated with Alban Hefin (Scottish), and the general midsummer mysteries.

Midsummer falls on the summer solstice, which is the longest day of the year, and a time of joy and strength for the light. This holiday celebrates the Sun King in all his glory, who can be identified amongst others as Mithras, the Bull God and Jesus Christ in Christianity. In Pagan celebrations in northern Europe, this is the time when the Oak King, representing the waxing year, is cast down by the Holly King, representing the waning year. The two are aspects of the one: the Oak King is the growing youth while the Holly King is male maturity.

Midsummer Night especially is seen as a time when all things are possible, and the sprites and faeries can cause mischief in the mortal world, as seen in Shakespeare's classic play A Midsummer Night's Dream. It is considered that the veil between the immortal and mortal worlds is thin at Midsummer, and that time can be stretched and twisted as the worlds are drawn closer together and intertwine.

External website:

Original text and translations

English.png English text

(Ding dong ding dong, midnight rising)
(Ding dong ding dong, chimes are striking)

Over hill, over dale, (Shadowy trees)
Thorough bush, thorough brier, (Whispering winds)
Over park, over pale, (Evening breeze)
Thorough flood, thorough fire, (Call Fairies in)

I do wander everywhere,
Swifter than the moon's sphere;
And I serve the fairy queen,
To dew her orbs upon the green:
The cow slips tall her pensioners be;
In their gold coats spots you see;
Those be rubies, fairy favours,
In those freckles live their savours:
I must go seek some dew drops here,
And hang a pearl in every cowslip's ear.

(We welcome summer in!)
 
The above lyrics are from Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream Act II, Scene I, with the exception of bracketed text (original work).