painting by Joseph Raffael
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Rumi & Strings W. A. Mathieu

Listen to 'A Chickpea' from Rumi & Strings

Rumi & Strings (2005)

One reason Rumi's poems, especially Coleman Barks' renditions of them, are ripe for the art-song composer is that the metaphors are so visual and sensual. “Ten Quatrains and a Chickpea” and “Birdsong” comprise twenty-four songs for Devi Mathieu's rich, fully alive soprano voice, accompanied by Shira Kammen on violin and the composer at the piano. “Harmönika” was written for violist Hank Dutt and cellist Joan Jeanrenaud, who perform it brilliantly on this CD. Although the poetry of Rumi is not a specific source for Harmönika, the intertwining in Rumi of human and divine love is similar to the constant mixing of the programmatic and the absolute in music. Are the players singing to each other, or are the strings singing to the Beloved?


Rumi & Strings is available from
Cold Mountain Music