In February for soprano, clarinet, violin & piano


"Jeremy Beck … combines modern complexity with timeless melodicism. … worth a mention [is] a beautiful song called “In February” for soprano, clarinet, violin and piano[.]"

- Francois Couture
Monsieur Delire

This composition was commissioned by the Austin Chamber Music Center, Felicity Coltman, director.  It was premiered by that group while on tour 14 June 1983, in Cloppenburg, West Germany. The text is mine, arising from a failed New York love affair:

Snow is on the Avenue;
I drift endlessly ignored by you.
It seems so strange, yet still –
So true.

Tonight it is a silent night.
I listen to the voices and colors through the wind.
I pretend they’re talking to me…

Haunted by a silent, bitter agony
Keeping passion smothered by cheap scenery:
You enslave your love while mine burns free.

Inside, I feel strong enough now to cry for you.
For your loneliness,
Your God-damn loneliness.
I see your fear: caught in tangled, restless streams of thought.
You are hiding in your dreams.

I know those dreams, of colored fields of flowers unexpectedly revealed.
No, I don’t miss you, darling, I don’t need you at all.
Except when mornings whisper silent echoes through the hall.
And clouds kiss the stars…

In February received its American premiere on 4 November 1983, with Katherine Lloyd, soprano; Todd Palmer, clarinet; Rachel Durling, violin; and Michele Buselli, piano, at the Mannes College of Music in New York City. It appears on the IonSound Project CD seen below.

soprano, clarinet, violin, piano
Date completed:
ca. 4:30
Text by the composer

Featured Recording

IonSound Project

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