By Antonin Dvorak
Dvořák composed this work as part of his cycle of “Gypsy Songs” for voice and piano. This song, with its wistful and longing melody, has become famous in its own right. It has been performed in many arrangements, both by singers and instrumentalists. The words were originally set in Czech (sung in our performance today) and German. Here is the English translation (by Natalia Macfarren):
Songs my mother taught me, in the days long vanished;
Seldom from her eyelids were the teardrops banished.
Now I teach my children each melodious measure;
Oft the tears are flowing, oft they flow from my memory’s treasure.