Songs My Mother Taught Me It is the fourth of seven songs from Dvorak’s cycle Gypsy Songs (Czech:Cigánské melodie), The Gypsy Songs are set to poems by Adolf Heyduk in both Czech and German. This song, in particular, has achieved widespread fame and has been recorded by many famous female singers.
This is my interpretation of the song which I sang at this year’s Kathleen Ferrier Bursary Competition in Blackburn. George Todica accompanied me during the competition and I hope that you like the performance.
I loved preparing this song and tried my best to get the correct feeling and colour into the Czech lyrics and to my Czech friends that listen please let me know how I could improve my pronunciation 🙂
The original Czech lyrics
Když mne stará matka zpívat, zpívat učívala,
podivno, že často, často slzívala.
A teď také pláčem snědé líce mučím,
když cigánské děti hrát a zpívat, hrát a zpívat učím!
The English transalation of the lyrics
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.