Posted in Project 8: Rounds and Catches

Catch 2: I’ll Be a Park and Thou Shalt be My Deer

Note: Once again, before seeing my example, you can read the general research I did about catches and rounds.


My second catch follows the interesting last progression given in Example 36 of the course:

i'll be a park 1.PNG

Fully notated with all the parts sounding:

I'll be a park 2

Similar to the first catch, this one is also based on Shakespeare. This time, the lyrics are from his poem Venus and Adonis. Essentially, throughout the poem, Venus is seen seducing Adonis. Here is the verse I used:

I’ll be a park, and thou shalt be my deer:
Feed where thou wilt, on mountain, or in dale;
Graze  on my lips, and if those hills be dry,
Stray lower, where the pleasant fountains lie.
“Within this limit is relief enough,
Sweet bottom grass, and high delightful plain,
Round rising hillocks, brakes obscure and rough,
To shelter thee from tempest, and from rain:
Then be my deer, since I am such a park.

The words “stray lower”, “pleasant fountains” and “sweet bottom-grass” are quite explicit, which is why I chose this part of the poem. As you can see, I had to delete some parts in order to fit the words with the melody.

As it is Venus who is speaking, the catch is written for sopranos. Being themed around Greek mythology, I think that the curious progression of Example 36 really suits this verse. It gives an ethereal feeling of the other, spiritual world, which I tried to highlight even more with the slower, Andante tempo and with the added extra note – Bb, which is given in the key signature.

The form would, in my opinion, be three 6-bar sentences. This is another irregularity, which again, matches the theme.

Here, I also used the hockets, but once again, I didn’t manage to combine the lyrics to create a vulgar word. However, this time as well, I believe the rests suits the catch, and even add to its other-worldly character. Hopefully in the future, I will manage to write my own lyrics and successfully create an interesting hocket that will result in interesting and surprising lewd wording, like many of the catches do. Again, Shakespeare’s lewd undertone seems to be quite enough for this example. Curiously, without this undertone, this piece would definitely be more inclined towards rounds.

Overall, I loved this project. Experimenting with rounds and catches was really fun, since their form was something very new to me. In fact, the whole idea that the melody can combine with itself to create counterpoint was a novelty that surprised me. Down the road, I hope to write more rounds and catches, and I look forward to exploring the rest of the course.

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