The Jabberwock (Danielson)

Here’s a repertoire contribution from my friend and colleague Steve Danielson! I love the rhythmic interest and storytelling in this setting. Read about it below:

The Jabberwock; Text by Lewis Carroll; Music by Steve Danielson


Why do singers like it?
It’s playful, yet dramatic. It allows the singer to act and get into the brilliant text by Lewis Carroll.

What is meaningful about it?
I know I’m not the first composer to set the poem to music, but this poem has been one of my favorites for years. I love the juxtaposition of the serious and the nonsensical and Carroll’s poem is exactly that. I tried to capture the fun/serious dichotomy in the music as well.

What is challenging about it?
Heavily rhythmic, and heavily text-driven. The fun is in the details.

What is easy about it?
The opening stanza is repeated later in the piece as well which helps the continuity.

Where did you perform it?
I wrote this in 2003 with no choir specifically in mind. I did not have a choir perform it until 2007 when it was performed by the Germantown High School Chamber Choir (under my direction).

Where can you order it?
Preview of sheet music and recording (in media player under preview pane)