Live performance at Palais des Beaux-Arts, Brussels on 3 June 2012
chorus: Octopus Symphony Chorus
orchestra: Le Concert d'Anvers
conductor: Bart Van Reyn
soprano: Ida Falk Winland
tenor: Yves Saelens
bass: Birger Radde
more info: www.octopusensembles.be
INTRODUCTION - indicates the husbandman's satisfaction at the abundant harvest.
That which Spring first promised with its blossoms, that which Summer ripened with its warmth, Autumn presents in abundance to the joyful farmer now.
Lucas (tenor): The golden store he now transports in heavy-laden wagons. The spacious barn can hardly hold all that his fields have yielded.
Simon (bass): Happily he looks around him, measuring the piled-up grain, and happiness fills his heart.
TRIO & CHORUS
Simon (bass): So nature honest toil rewards, she invokes it, smiles upon it, gladdens it with hope, lends it a willing hand,
and guides it with all her might.
Trio: All benefits come from thee, O toil. The cottage that shelters us, the wool that clothes us,
the food that sustains us, all come from thee, they are thy gifts. O toil, O noble toil, all benefits come from thee.
Hannah (soprano): Thou dost virtue instil, and makest rough-hewn manners gentle.
Lucas (tenor): Thou dost ward off vice, and purify the heart of man.
Simon (bass): Thou dost give us the courage and inclination to strive for goodness and perform our duty.
Chorus: O toil, O noble toil, from thee comes every benefit.
Hannah (soprano): See how impatiently the youngsters rush to the hazel-bush! Small boys swing on every single branch, and from the swaying bush the ripe fruit rains like hail.
Simon (bass): The farmer's son is climbing nimbly up a ladder to the top of the tree. Hidden in the topmost branches, he sees his sweetheart drawing nigh, and, with a lover's sense of fun, throws the fat nuts down into her path.
Lucas (tenor): Around every tree in the garden girls of all ages are gathered, their colour as fresh and rosy as the ripe fruit they pick.