music for the night


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Monteverdi “Voglio di vita uscir” (I want to depart this life)

Voglio di vita uscir, voglio che cadano
Quest’ossa in polve e queste membra in cenere,
E che i singulti miei tra l’ombre vadano,
Già che quel piè ch’ingemma l’herbe tenere
Sempre fugge da me, ne lo trattengono
I lacci, ohimè, del bel fanciul di Venere.

Vo che gl’abissi il mio cordoglio vedano,
E l’aspro mio martir le furie piangano,
E che i dannati al mio tormento cedano.
A Dio crudel, gl’orgogli tuoi rimangano
A incrudelir con gl’altri. A te rinuncio,
Né vo’ più che mie speme in te si frangano.

S’apre la tomba, il mio morir t’annuncio.
Una lagrima spargi, et alfin donami
Di tua tarda pietade un solo nuncio,
E s’amando t’offesi, homai perdonami.

I want to depart this life, I want my bones
to fall into dust, and my limbs into ashes,
and my sobs to disappear among the shadows,
since those feet, which adorn the tender grasses,
are always fleeing from me; nor are they restrained,
alas, by the bonds of the lovely son of Venus.

I want the depths of hell to see my sorrow,
and the Furies to weep for my harsh agony,
and the damned to acknowledge my torment.
Farewell, cruel one, let your pride remain
to torture others; I renounce you!
I no longer want you to dash my hopes to pieces.

The tomb opens: my death is at hand.
Shed but one tear, and at the last give me
a single sign of your pity (now too late);
and if my love has offended you, forgive me now!

(now i’m hoping to eventually get a clip of her singing “lasciatemi morire” …)

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About thả diều
writing-challenged opera-addict

5 Responses to music for the night

  1. qlorgnette says:

    Siiiigh.

  2. Agathe says:

    Now that is some dark text content, in comparison the singing seems nearly cheerful. Thanks for posting with the translation!

    • thả diều says:

      except the very sharp turn in the ending. i really love how the mood was switched. but yeah, interesting how Monteverdi put it in rather “cheerful” music at the start.. i guess you could even take it somber or defiant?
      i wanted to mainly post the ending of the aria, but realize you wont hear the mood change unless heard as a whole…

      • Agathe says:

        Defiant lamenting maybe, there seems to be quite an amount of anger, while in the end it’s more despairing. But maybe in that time death was also more imminent for everyone, so maybe not such a big deal to talk about.

  3. FierceRev says:

    Lovely, thank you!

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