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If music be the food of love

verses by Colonel Henry Heveningham music by Henry Purcell, 1691/2 (Z. 379 b)

Many choristers believe this song to be a Purcell setting of a Shakespearean text, but the only direct quotation is the rst line, which matches the opening seven words of Twelfth Night. Purcell set this text twice in the 1690s, and made two slightly different versions of the rst setting. The rst version of the earlier setting for solo voice and harpsichord (Z. 379 b), is here arranged for a capella mixed choir and transposed down two whole tones. In this version Purcell set only the rst verse to music, so the alternate version, which was published in the Gentlemans Journal of June 1692 (Z. 379 a) has been consulted to provide a second verse; singers should note the rhythmic differences at the outset of each verse in all parts. This song was made famous in modern times by the countertenor Alfred Deller in the version arranged by Sir Michael Tippett and Walter Bergmann. Heveningham: If music be the food of love, sing on till I am lld with joy; for then my listning soul you move with pleasures that can never cloy, your eyes, your mien, your tongue declare that you are music evrywhere. Pleasures invade both eye and ear, so erce the transports are, they wound, and all my senses feasted are, tho yet the treat is only sound. Sure I must perish by your charms, unless you save me in your arms. Shakespeare: If music be the food of love, play on, Give me excess of it, that, surfeiting, The appetite may sicken, and so die. That strain again! it had a dying fall; O, it came oer my ear like the sweet sound That breathes upon a bank of violets, Stealing and giving odour! Enough, no more; Tis not so sweet now as it was before. O spirit of love, how quick and fresh art thou! That, notwithstanding thy capacity Receiveth as the sea, nought enters there, Of what validity and pitch soeer, But falls into abatement and low price Even in a minute. So full of shapes is fancy, That it alone is high fantastical.

2
Col. Henry Heveningham

If Music be the Food of Love


Note: these divisi indicate verse differences: V.1 upward stems, V.2 downward stems. Do not try to sing both at once!

b b 4 j j . . j . Soprano & b b 4 n be the food of love, Sing on, sing on, 1. If mu sic So erce, so erce, 2. Plea sures in vade both eye and ear, j b Alto 4 & b bb 4 . be Sing on, 1. If mu sic the food of love, So erce, 2. Plea sures in vade both eye and ear, b . . Tenor 4 & b bb 4 J J be the food of love, Sing on, sing on, 1. If mu sic and ear, So erce, so erce, 2. Plea sures in vade both eye ?b 4 Bass b bb 4 mu sic be the food of love, Sing on, sing 1. If 2. Plea sures in vade both eye and ear, So erce, so erce, so 4 bb b . . . J & b J b & b bb .
on, erce, sing on so erce

Henry Purcell (1659-1695)

j j

sing so

sing so

sing, so,

on, erce,

till the

I trans

?b b bb
7

b & b bb sing on

on, erce,

sing on till so erce the

so erce

till the

I trans

am ports

am

lld, are,

lld,

am ports

am so

lld are

with joy; they wound,

. .

For And

lld erce

with they

joy; wound,

I trans

J
For And

am ports

lld, are,

am so

lld erce

with they

joy; wound,

bb . j &b b J then my list ning soul you move, for all my sen ses feast ed are, and b j j . & b bb . My list ning soul you move, for My sen ses feast ed are, and b b j . &b b J then my list ning soul you move, for all my sen ses feast ed are, and ? bb b b
then sen

sing so

on till erce the

I trans

am ports

lld, are,

am so

lld erce

Copyright 2004 Philip Legge, for the Choral Public Domain Library: http://www.cpdl.org/ Edition may be freely distributed, duplicated, performed, or recorded. All other rights reserved.

my ses

soul feast

j then my list ning all my sen ses then my list ning all my sen ses J then my list ning all my sen ses
then sen

with they

joy; For wound, My

you ed

move, for are, my

my ses

bb b & b
10

.
you ed

bbb b n & soul you feast ed ? bb bb


soul you feast ed soul you feast ed
13

bbb b &
soul feast

J move With plea sures that can are, Tho yet the treat is j . move With plea sures that can are, Tho yet the treat is n
move With are, Tho


ne on

bb b . j & b . J b & b bb b & b bb

? bb b b
16

eyes, your mien, your tongue de clare That you are mu I must pe rish by your charms, Un less you save j .. . . b J eyes, your mien, your tongue de clare That you are mu I must pe rish by your charms, Un less you save . . .. J eyes, your mien, your tongue de clare That you are mu I must pe rish by your charms, Un less you save .. J J J J J J
eyes, your I must mien, your tongue de pe rish by your
1.

plea yet

sures the

that treat

can is

move With are, Tho

plea yet

sures the

that treat

can is

ver cloy, Your ly Sure j sound. n J ne ver cloy, Your on ly sound. Sure ne ver cloy, Your on ly sound. Sure
ne on

ver ly

cloy, sound.

Your Sure

bb b & b

b & b bb sic me b b &b b sic me ? bb b b ev


in

sic ev ry
me

clare charms,

That Un

you less

are you
2.

mu save

sic me

<n> n ev ry in your ev ry in your ry


in your your

where, arms,


your Sure

.. . J
your Sure

where, arms,

your Sure

.. . .. . .. .

where. arms.

where. arms.

where, arms,

your Sure

where. arms.

where, arms,

where. arms.