Cantus is a fun, theatrical kind of choral work, approximately 14 minutes in duration, that was composed to be performed either with choreography or without. It is comprised of four Walt Whitman poems and set for Mixed Choir (featuring an assortment of vocal soloists) and 2 percussionists (one largely on pitched percussion, the other, non-pitched).

First performed by the Vassar Chamber Singers, Cantus was originally choreographed by Paul Mosley, director of the Vassar Repertory Dance Theatre in 2001.

The Poems are:  

I am he that aches with amorous love - An impression of an Elizabethan Madrigal.

Oh Captain, my captain - The strophic structure is enhanced with "word-painting".

Hast never come to thee an hour - Written as a "call and response", it contrasts a contemporary pop beat with a jazzy Vibraphone line.

and Lingering last drops - A short American-style lieder featuring a Mezzo-soprano soloist.

Listen to the audio, take a look at the title pages and read the poems by clicking on the menu to the left.  If you like, you can order a copy of the music.

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