Liadain agus Cuirithir (2007/2009)

for SATB Choir. ​

Duration: 5 mins.

World premiere by the Farmleigh Singers, conductor David Brophy, Farmleigh Music and Arts Festival, Dublin, 2019.

Programme Note

This is a choral arrangement of the first half of Taibhreamh Ó Ríada which was written for the group Líadan.

The text is in old Irish, it is an ancient Irish poem of an unknown author dating from around the 9th or 10th Century.

Cen áinius
in chaingen dorigenus:
an rocharus rocráidius. …

Mé Líadain,
rocharussa Cuirithir:
is fírithir adfiadar.

Gair bása
hi coimthecht mo Chuirithir:
frissom ba maith mo gnássa.

Céol caille
fomchanad la Cuirithir
la fogur fairce flainne.

ní cráidfed frim Chuirithir
do dálaib cacha ndénainn.

Ní chela!
ba hésom mo chrideṡerc,
cía nocharainn cách chenae.

Deilm ndegae
rotethainn mo chridesae,
rofess nícon bíad cenae.

The following translation comes from the webpage

Without pleasure
(is) the bargain which I have made:
what I have loved, I have vexed. […]
“I (am) Liadain,
I who have loved Cuirithir:
it is true exactly as it is told.
A short time (only)
I was in the company of my Cuirithir:
my intercourse with him was good.
The music of the woods
would sing to me (when) with Cuirithir,
together with the voice of the purple sea.
I would have thought
that there would not result torment to my Cuirithir
from all the encounters which I might have arranged.
I may not conceal (it)!
It was him indeed (who was) my heart’s love,
even if I might have loved everybody else besides.
The roaring of the blaze
has shattered my heart:
it is certain that it might not exist without him.”