3 Songs Without Words
Composed by Paul Ben-Haim
Written for Flute and Piano
Published by Israel Music Institute
Include score and flute part
Sephardic Melody (3')
Ben-Haim conceived his THREE SONGS WITHOUT WORDS as vocalises for high voice and piano but it later occured to him that the songs lent themselves as well to instrumental performance; the various versions for solo instrument and piano are the composer's own arrangements of the vocalises.
The composer explains the three parts of this little Suite as “tone picutres of an oriental mood” and adds that “whoever's imagination needs additional prompting may think that the long-breathed melodies of the Arioso were inspired by the mood of a summer day's pitiless heat in the bare Judean Hills, while the Ballad pictures the monotonous babbling of an oriental story-teller; the last song is based on a traditional folk tune of sephardic-Jewish origin – a veritable pearl which I have only given a setting“.
Regarding the instrumental performance, the composer has said that “an instrumentalist playing the THREE SONGS should renounce all tendencies of virtuoso brilliance in favour of a purely melodic expression“.
The THREE SONGS WITHOUT WORDS (which were written in 1952) take about 9 minutes in performance.