Involuntary Love Songs

Jocelyn Morlock
Composition Date: 2008
Duration: 00:15:58
Genre: Solo Voice, With Solo Instrument, , Keyboards


Instrumentation Set Number 1:
  • 1 x Piano
  • 1 x Bass
Instrumentation Set Number 2:
  • 1 x Piano
  • 1 x Soprano
Instrumentation Set Number 3:
  • 1 x Piano
  • 1 x High voice
Instrumentation Set Number 4:
  • 1 x Piano
  • 1 x Baritone
Instrumentation Set Number 5:
  • 1 x Piano
  • 1 x Mezzo Soprano
Instrumentation Set Number 6:
  • 1 x Piano
  • 1 x Tenor
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Programme Note:
Involuntary Love Songs
These three new songs – each in a different way – speak to the connections, the disconnections and the spaces between internal and external worlds. There are moments when something wild and unexpressed struggles to break though into the world. There are secrets in plain view, glimpses of hidden spaces, and obscured erratic truths that undermine the tidy illusion of control. – Alan Ashton
During "Thaw" the protagonist is quite disconnected from his own feelings. There are occasional "thaws" in his demeanour, but much of the time he is an observer and seems to be feeling very little. Even when he says he misses the other person, he prefaces it with the distancing phrase "I was about to say something". When writing the music for “Thaw” I attempted to mirror the coolness and restraint of the protagonist, and also to point out the occasions of strong emotional attachment, without letting the music ever get too free.
"Matches" uses imagery of fire to portray a person who is in a wild and desperate state. The tighter and tighter circles that the protagonist is running in suggest a sort of imploding introversion, where incredible energy, fear and denial have nowhere to go. The music here is also very energetic – the vocal part is full of short, almost breathless phrases. The piano part is very dense with chords; indeed, the piano threatens to overwhelm the singer at times.
In "Script" the protagonist is more definite about what he is feeling - the connection between the body and writing is made in a more clear and visceral sense. The suddenness of the summer storm at the end of the poem suggests that the protagonist is caught off-guard by his own powerful feelings, and that there is an element of danger in it. When writing the music for “Script” I attempted to create more emotional, ecstatic music, almost a siren song in which the performers could freely admit to powerful feelings that were denied earlier. The vocalise at the end may evoke a sense of transcendence, perhaps a place beyond words. - Jocelyn Morlock

Commissioned by: the Eckhardt-Gramatté National Music Competition

Premiere Information:
May 6, 2008
Lorne Watson Recital Hall
Brandon, Manitoba


  • Call Number:
  • MV 1101 M865in
  • Genre:
  • Solo Voice, With Solo Instrument, , Keyboards
  • Date of Acquisition:
  • October 14, 2009
  • Type:
  • Print-music, Published by CMC
  • Physical Description:
  • 1 score (31 p.) ; 28 cm.
    31 Pages
    Height: 28 cm
    Width: 22 cm
  • Language Information
  • Language of libretto: English
  • Additional Information:
  • Voice and Piano - there are six versions in total: Soprano, Mezzo-Soprano, Coloratura, Tenor, Baritone, Bass-Baritone

    Texts by Alan Ashton
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Available Products for this piece:

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Involuntary Love Songs: Score and Parts
Score and Parts
(downloadable PDF)
HalcyonHalcyonCD $13.98
Involuntary Love Songs by Jocelyn Morlock (Score)
Printed on demand
Involuntary Love Songs
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