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One my favourite New Zealand poets is Robin Hyde (1906–1939) and I have set a number of her texts over the years for both choir and solo voice. She was a remarkable literary figure at a time when women were denied many opportunities in her chosen fields of journalism and serious writing. Her output includes several novels as well as many poems. Of somewhat fragile health, her short life ended when she took her own life in a fit of depression on the other side of the world.
This setting of "Rain in the Night" is my second, following an unaccompanied choir version from 2005. I was drawn to the many musical images in the poem, especially the references to "God's minstrelsy" and “chords of beauty” which are set at the musical climax of the piece.
"Rain in the Night" was written for a 'call for scores' from the Auckland University Student Choir. It was one of two works selected for performance by the choir.
Text by Robin Hyde