Morena 02:48

Liner Notes

Morena, an a cappella SATB arrangement of a Ladino folksong, is one of several similar settings that form Sid Robinovitch’s choral suite Mosaic of Jewish Folksongs. It is a well-crafted, simple treatment that preserves the original character of the song and gives transparency to the words of the poem within an artistic framework. Cautious use of open fifths and parallel octaves in alternation with dominant-tonic harmony gives clarity to the choral expression and underscores the Sephardi origin. The piece was written in the 1980s and published in 1990.



Sung in Ladino

They call me “The Brunette”
But I was born quite fair.
From all of my elegant promenading
I have lost my fair color.

From those windows
They throw arrows at me.
If they were love’s arrows,
May they come straight at me.

“The Brunette” I am called
By the king’s son,
If he calls me again
I will go with him.

Sung in Ladino

“Morena” me llaman,
Yo blanca naci,
De pasear, galana,
Mi color perdí.

D’aquellas ventanicas,
M’arronjan flechas.
Si son de amores,
Vengan derechas.

“Morena” me llama,
El hijo del rey.
Si otra vez me llama,
Me vo yo con él.



Composer: Sid Robinovitch

Length: 02:48
Genre: Choral

Performers: English Chamber ChoirGuy Protheroe, Conductor

Date Recorded: 02/01/1999
Venue: St. Giles Church, Cripplegate, London, UK
Engineer: Hughes, Campbell
Assistant Engineer: Weir, Simon
Project Manager: Levin, Neil

Additional Credits:

Publisher: Transcontinental
English Text: Sid Robinovitch
Ladino Text: Levy 1959-73


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