Biblical is a song by Scottish alternative rock band Biffy Clyro, released as the second single from the band’s sixth studio album, Opposites (2013), on 29 March 2013. It made number 70 on the Official UK Singles Chart. Biblical is a song cycle which consists of musical settings by Czech composer Antonin Dvorak of ten texts, selected by him, from the Book of Psalms. It was originally composed for low voice and piano (1894, Op. 99, B. 185). The first five songs were later orchestrated by the composer (1895, B. 189). Get all the information on Biblical through the below sections of this www.biblegateway.cc article.
Biblical Songs was written between 5 and 26 March 1894, while Dvorak was living in New York City. It has been suggested that he was prompted to write them by news of a death (of his father Frantisek, or of the composers Tchaikovsky or Gounod, or of the conductor Hans von Bulow); but there is no good evidence for that, and the most likely explanation is that he felt out of place in the bustle of a big city, and that after two years in America he was homesick for Bohemia. He returned to Europe in April 1895.
The original piano version was published in Czech by Simrock in 1895, with English and German translations of the text. Dvorak took particular care that the translations were appropriate to the vocal line. In January 1895, Dvorak orchestrated the first five songs. The manuscript was later lost, and only rediscovered and published in 1914 (by Simrock). In 1914, the conductor Vilem Zemanekorchestrated the other five. Arrangements of the cycle for other forces, and other orchestrations of the second five songs, have since been made.
The first known public performance of any of the songs was on 26 September 1895: it was of No. 6 only, and took place at Mlada Boleslav; the performers were O. Schellerova (voice) and an unknown pianist. It is not known when or where the full cycle with piano accompaniment was premiered. The orchestral version of the first five songs was premiered in Prague on 4 January 1896, by the baritone Frantisek Sir and the Czech Philharmonic conducted by the composer. On 19 March 1896, Dvorak conducted a performance of the same songs in Queen’s Hall, London, where the soloist was Katharine Fisk. The cycle has been arranged for other forces, and the second five songs orchestrated, by other composers.
Recordings of Biblical Songs
The complete cycle has been recorded numerous times since the introduction of LP records in the late 1940s. Some notable recordings up to and including the first LP release include:
- 1913: George Henschel (voice and piano), “By the Waters of Babylon”
- Unknown date: Hynek Maxa (baritone) and unknown pianist, the complete cycle
- Unknown date: Paul Robeson (bass) and unknown pianist, “Pri rekach babylonskych.”
- 1952: Marta Krasova (mezzo-soprano) and Premysl Koci (baritone) with Miroslav Kampelsheimer (organ). First known LP recording. 10″ mono LP Supraphon DM 5128.
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