A Palette To Paint Us As We Are (SA)

SSA, piano

This thoughtful and variegated piece was inspired by poet Gerald Rich's moving to our skins' true colors -- including such luscious shades as mahogany, coffee, champagne and rose gold. In both the choral and piano parts, a wide variety of harmonies, textures and timbres are woven together, moving softly and tenderly from one hue to another, creating a seamless tapestry of sound.


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WomanVoice Consortium Choirs: Augsburg College, University of Minnesota, University of St. Thomas, and Hamline University; Kathy Romey, conductor. Minneapolis, MN
Santa Fe Women's Ensemble; Linda Rainey, conductor. Santa Fe, NM
Imagine!; Roberta Shimensky, conductor. Sandy, UT
Washington Women's Chorus; Donald Richardson, conductor. Washington, DC & Bethesda, MD


"Alexander's writing for women's chorus is especially good, and...her settings of subjects relating to women's issues are exceptionally strong." David N. Lewis, All Music Guide

Text Author or Source: 
Gerald Rich

"A Palette To Paint Us As We Are"
Poem by Gerald Rich

Give us a palette to paint us as we are.
Enough of black and white, yellow and red,
Those false colors that sham at fact.

Coffee, and chocolate, and café au lait,
Ivoried saffron, and saffroned ivory,
Bronze, and brass, copper, and rose gold,
Tea and pale butter, golden almond,
Infinite varieties of browns and tans,
Pale rose, pink and soft rose cream,
mahogany, oak, cedar, and champagne.

These are the colors of people I see,
Not black and white, not yellow and red.
Those false colors no longer will do.
Give us a palette to paint us true.

© by Gerald Rich. Reprinted by permission of the poet