About this Piece
Jean Yves Daniel-Lesur, French composer and teacher, was born in Paris in 1908. His mother was a composer and a student of Tournemire, with whom Daniel-Lesur had early organ and composition lessons. He did further study at the Paris Conservatoire. In 1936 Daniel-Lesur was, with Messiaen, Jolivet, and Baudrier, a founding member of the group La Jeune France, dedicated to a "return to the human" and opposed to the neo-classicism then prevailing in Paris. Epithalame comes from a collection that sets to music the Song of Songs. Daniel-Lesur uses the tune of the Veni sponsa Christi chant and layers its text with the following famous passage.
|Pose-moi comme un sceau sur ton coeur
|Put me like a seal on your heart
|Comme un sceau sur ton bras
|Like a seal on your arm
|Car l'amour est fort comme la mort
|For love is as strong as death
|La jalousie est dure comme l'enfer
|Jealousy is as cruel as the grave
|L'amour ses traits sont de feu
|Its flashes are flashes of fire
|une flamme de Yahvé!
|The very flame of the Lord!
|Les grandes eaux n'ont pu éteindre l'amour
|Many waters cannot quench love
|Les fleuves ne le submergeront pas!
|Neither can floods drown it!