Sleep Wednesday, March 12, 2014
The beautifully illustrated children’s book Sleep is the latest result of a collaboration between poet Charles Anthony Silvestri and composer Eric Whitacre. In Whitacre’s own words: “The book you are holding is the latest chapter in a story that began in 2000 when I wrote a choral work using as its text Robert Frost‘s beloved poem, ‘Stopping By Woods.’ The piece was a success, but I could not secure the legal rights to use the Frost text for publication.
“Rather than abandon the piece, I asked my friend, poet Charles Anthony Silvestri, to create a new alternative text to replace the Frost poem, one which mimicked the structure and rhyme scheme of the Frost, matched its tonal qualities, and which would seem, in all ways, to be the original text for the music I had created. His poem was a beautiful meditation on the idea of sleep, and it fit my music perfectly. ‘Sleep’ has become one of my most successful choral works, and was the basis for the enormously popular Virtual Choir 2.0 Internet phenomenon, uniting choristers from all over the world.
“I am so proud to introduce to you an entirely new way to enjoy and share this wonderful poem, now part of a new collaboration with illustrator Anne Horjus. Enjoy this book, explore the music which inspired it, and see the connections between words and art and music which are everywhere.”