Du musst verstehn! - (2011)    

Johann Wolfgang Goethe

for medium voice and piano


Du musst verstehn!
Aus Eins mach Zehn,
Und Zwei lass gehn,
Und Drei mach gleich,
So bist du reich.
Verlier die Vier!
Aus Fünf und Sechs -
So sagt die Hex -
Mach Sieben und Acht,
So ists vollbracht:
Und Neun ist Eins,
Und Zehn ist keins,
Das ist das Hexen-Einmaleins!

[ 2 pages, circa 1' 05" ]

Johann Wolfgang Goethe


The text comes from Goethe's Faust.


Understand this, then!
From one make ten,
Two go just when
Three finds its niche,
And so you're rich.
The four you nix!
From five and six --
So says the witch --
To make the switch:
And nine is one,
And ten in none,
Now the hex is spun.


Rhymed paraphrase by the composer



The text is broken into two sections, with repetitions of the first line acting as punctuation between strophes and as the small coda. The gestures under the witches' spell in part swap parts, canon-like, with chromatic gestures descending by half-steps leading to the final statement. For other setting to texts of Goethe, click here.



The score for is available as a free PDF download, though any major commercial performance or recording of the work is prohibited without prior arrangement with the composer. Click on the graphic below for this piano-vocal score.


Du musst verstehn!