How is Your Heart Today

Instrumentation: SATB
Duration: 3:10
Commission: Atlanta Young Singers
Premiere: 3/25/2023
Atlanta Young Singers, conducted  by Paige Mathis
The Church at Ponce & Highland
Atlanta, GA

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How is Your Heart Today?, commissioned by Atlanta Young Singers, grew directly from several zoom meetings with the choristers, conductor Paige Mathis as well as terrific staff facilitators. I had mentioned that I wanted to compose a piece that spoke to an issue that was strongly on the minds of the choristers and Paige Mathis kindly organized three sessions. They involved discussions of topics the choristers were thinking about, explorations of found sounds and of vocal sounds. The topic that emerged most vividly was the COVID pandemic and its multiple effects on their lives: what they missed, what they wished for. I created the lyrics after hearing their thoughts, including the phrase “How is your heart today?” spoken by one of their friends.  I also want to thank my dear friend, the distinguished poet Barbara Golberg, for her creative inspiration

How is Your Heart Today?
by Judith Shatin

How is your heart today?
My heart feels heavy, it’s beat is unsteady
Boom, boom, boom, boom,

I miss my friends, I miss their touch
This virus has stolen way too much!
Boom, boom, boom, boom,

Can’t visit my family, they might get sick,
Just have to stay home, there’s no quick fix.
Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Delta,

Now we’re up to Omicron,
I want you gone, I want you gone!
How is your heart today?

My heart feels locked up,
The key thrown away.
Boom, boom, boom, boom

I’m tired of staring all day at a screen,
And yet I’m already beginning to dream
That when this is over, and I hear you say
“How is your heart today?”

My answer will be “Now my heart sings,”
Boom, boom, boom, boom
“Now my heart sings, it soars takes wing,
Hear my heart sing, sing, sing.” –JS

© 2022 Wendigo Music (BMI) All Rights Reserved

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