The Desolate City Annotations

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After the repetition of the dream passage beginning in bar sixty, another interlude starts in bar sixty-eight that both transitions from the previous mood and prepares for the next. Continuity from the previous section is seen with the arpeggiation and statements of a motive from the opening vocal line. The interlude also helps to prepare for a more somber mood with the appearance of A@ minor, the parallel minor. The vocal line, in which the speaker outrightly admits doubt regarding the ideal, is marked recitative, and its chordal accompaniment is appropriately sparse. The shift to this section is quick, with an applied dominant seventh chord to B@ minor in bars seventy-four and seventy-five. In a moment of truth, all attention is appropriately…show more content…
The stark, thirdless, parallel chords in particular set the mood for the speaker’s utter desolation over lost love. Against the march-like, duple-divided beat of the bass (bars five through ten), the rhythmic setting of the vocal line contains not only dotted rhythms that articulate the desolation of the speaker’s reality, but also hints of lulling triplets, which are soon featured prominently to describe the speaker’s dream state. With the line “Dark to me are the heavens,” triplets fall in bar ten just prior to the lengthy, even, setting of the word “heavens” in the vocal line. The dotted rhythms sound angular and harsh, suggesting the pain of reality, while the triplet figure softly lulls, evoking the hope of the heavens and the realm of fantasy and…show more content…
They also suggest that at the very least Daniels may have been inspired by the works of composer Roy Harris. Other later works, including Deep Forest, a setting of a translated sixth-century classical text by Fortunatus titled Salve festa dies Op. 38, no. 1(1939), and Three Observations for Three Woodwinds (1953) likewise suggest that Daniels may have been influenced by a few other composers who were active during her lifetime and whose music was making a mark. These findings indicate that Daniels moved ahead thoughtfully absorbing those new musical means that she considered to be genuine to her
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