Harry Stafylakis | Composer, Educator


The Metal and the Flower
for tenor or soprano, piano, and accordion (2012)
6 minutes

Text by P. K. Page (text © 1997, the Estate of P.K. Page, used by permission of the Porcupine's Quill)

Performed by Nils Neubert, tenor; Soyeon Kate Lee, piano; and Red Wierenga, accordion.
Recorded on May 15, 2012 in Elebash Hall, New York (live recording of World Premiere).

Score and parts available for purchase (PDF or hard copy). Send an inquiry through the Contact page.

Program Notes

In her poem “The Metal and the Flower”, Canadian author P. K. Page addresses the life-long tensions prevalent in failed long-term relationships. She depicts a still yet aggressive terrain demarcated by barbed wire to one side and rose briar on the other, ruminating on the couple’s essential incompatibility as an unsurpassable threshold. This musical setting – scored for tenor, accordion, and piano – embraces both the graceful, calm tone of the poet’s scene and the cold violence of its constituent elements, highlighting the former in fluid song reminiscent of Romantic lieder and the latter with jagged rhythms and melodic contours drawn from popular (metal) songcraft.

The Metal and the Flower has been awarded a 2013 Godfrey Ridout prize by the SOCAN Foundation.