The Analysis of the Song "Sorrow Darkens Ev’ry Feature"

Published: 2021-06-30 01:50:05
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Category: Music

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The piece of music that I chose is called “Sorrow Darkens Ev’ry Feature”, this song was composed by George Frideric Handel in 1757 and performed much later by William Berger with accompaniment from the Ludus Baroque Chamber Orchestra. This song is a part of the album The Triumph of Time and Truth. I have never been a fan of classical music. I find the genre to be a little too slow and restrained in the way it is played. However, I picked this song because the sorrow portrayed through William Berger’s voice really captivated me.
Good music is one that tells a story and this song completely delivered on that. The way that Berger’s voice went from a soft woe to a very heavy weep really showcased the despair that the character felt. He was accompanied by some stringed instruments and a piano which helped highlight the purity of his voice and matched the tone Berger had set perfectly. The song started off with a sad entrance of Strings that set the texture to come. Only to be dragged ever increasingly downward by the first line, “Sorrow Darkens ev’ry feature. As when o’er the face of nature. Gloomy Clouds the mantle throw” (Lines 1-3). To highlight the importance of that first sentence Berger goes onto to repeat It. Light soft strings follow along with Berger almost as is they were trying to create a counter point to the negativity that he is stating but are then crushed and brought down by the sadness of the vocals. An example of this is in the lines, “Pleasure all around enlightens,like the sun that gayly brightens natures landskip here below”(lines 4-6) As soon as these lines finish the melody is once again optimistic. The songs form went back and forth from positive points like, “the beauty smiling and sweet beguiling” (Lines19-20) to the following line “son dropping and dying”(line 21). The struggle of the song ends with a depressing tone in both the vocals and instruments.
William Berger began his singing careers at age 10 and later studied voice, piano, percussion and conducting at the London Royal Academy of Music. He later made his debut at such great venues as Liceu Barcelona, Opera Lucerne and Opera Detoulon. I find Berger to have captured the meaning behind handel’s work quite well. The Triumph of Time and Truth Was written in 1757, the 7-year war was happening between France and Britain as such there would have been a lot of death surrounding Handel. The difference between other music in sacred spaces and this song is that it tells more of a story. The Tone feels very human and emotional. The tone of the music from class was very focused and emotionally limited.

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