Translated Arias & Songs

Three Song translations.

For Denise Leigh,
English classical and operatic soprano.

Chris Channing acted as her physical performance coach.
He has translated several core repertory Italian arias and songs for her.

He also put together and directed
“Horizontal Heroines – Sex, Madness and Sleep in Opera and Popular Song”.
A recital for Denise at the Liverpool Dada Festival during Liverpool City of Culture.

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Verdi, La Traviata. ‘Sempre Libera’.
‘Freedom must be mine’

 

(recit)

Madness

Madness

These are pointless dreams

Poor woman – alone – no one to turn to

I must fight for myself in this whirlpool of sin they call Paris.

What should I do now?

What can I hope for?

I must swim with the tide in this whirlpool called Paris. (includes cadenza)

 

(theme comes in)

Freedom must be mine . let me blow like a leaf from one joy to another

Let my life be filled with unspeakable fun let it always be sunny and bright.

(Middle 8)

I’ll be out with the dawn then till sunrise

I will live me the life of a lark

(theme again)

OH – How my heart will sing as I seek out my  pleasures with just one more cherry to bite

(cadenza’d second line of melody)

 

I will take heart

I will take part

In every joy that is open to man

I will take part

I will take heart

Ahhh Ahhh ahhhh I’ll take heart.

Da capo

Ending the last extended cadenzas with:

Ahh ahhh ahhh-lways sunny and bright

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‘Unthinking liar’.
English version of
‘Bugiardo and Incosciente’ by Mina.
Melody and Lyrics by Paolo Limiti.

Verse 1
I’m here while you rest  – I’ve been here a while.

It’s the way I drown – the hatred inside.

I’d like to wake you up – but then

I think perhaps not. – Not now.
I watch your face, – sleeping well,

I hate all of you, yes – everything.
No surprises there. – Since we met
Up to now there’s nothing about you that I’d keep.

Chorus:

Of course seen like this,  up close in a half light,

Your sleeping face has the look of an angel,

seen like this,  up close in a half light

what a baby you are.

Verse 2:

Look, look at these eyes,-  these lashes these eyes.

These long dark lashes –  that keep me under your thumb,

Lying more and more –  thinking less and less.

Just how stupid would you say it is to love a man like you?

One thing I hate about you – is the way you love all your friends –

Not in a million years would you hurt one of them.
When did one of them last have to thank you

For a day of sadness – but do they ever dry your tears?

Chorus:

Of course seen like this,  up close in a half light,

Your sleeping face has the look of an angel

Seen like this,  up close in a half light,

Your sleeping face has the look of an angel.

Verse 3:

I hate you and now in a while – when you wake up

I won’t keep quiet – there’s really no point.

I’ll choose with such great care – the words that’ll hurt you the most

The ones that get right inside – and do the most harm.

then I’ll tell you I’m leaving soon – with only one regret,

to have loved you so much – and I’ve no idea why.

Lord knows what I’d give – to not have to recall

To not have to think of us – not think of you with me.

Chorus:

Of course seen like this,  up close in a half light,

Your sleeping face has the look of an angel,

Seen like this,  up close in a half light

what a baby you are.

Verse 4:

You move and as you wake –  you’ll do your usual sigh

You’ll turn your head – open your hands

you’ll open your mouth – squint your eyes

And nearly awake –  you say my name.

Look, see, here I am,  – leaning over you

And this time no – I won’t give in.

It’s so nice to swear  – to send you to hell.

No-one you’ll ever know will curse like me.

Chorus:

… ready to speak caught out by a mem’ry

i reply, I’m here – I’m here and I love you.

… ready to speak caught out by a mem’ry

i reply, I’m here – I’m here and I love you.

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‘You’ll see’.
English version of :
‘Vedrai Vedrai’ by Luigi Tenco

Every evening, seldom speaking
You want some tea? Yes, love. I’ll go, I’ll bring it through.
If we weren’t always so damned exhausted
Not just going through the paces day by day.
Yes, I know that this is absolutely not the life we dreamed we’d live
The hopes we had when all we did was play.

You’ll see, you’ll see
You’ll see how things will change for us.
It may not be tomorrow
But one fine day they’ll change.
You wait, you’ll see
I’ll take us somewhere – new.
In the end I’m still the one you know
And one day soon I’ll change.

Just now and then, to see you crying.
Just now and then to see a look of hate come through.
But you’re never any less than understanding
Always patient – and tender.
Shaken and ashamed to see us going on like nothing’s wrong
With me who now depends so much on you.

You’ll see, you’ll see
You’ll see how things will change.
It may not be tomorrow
But one fine day they’ll change.
You wait, you’ll see
I’ll take us somewhere – new.
In the end I’m still the one you know
And one fine day I’ll change.