Tsatsi La Pallo
This song for three female voices about judgment day is somewhat ambivalent: we are not sure if this is the ‘Day of Judgment’ in the Christian sense, nor do we know if it is to be welcomed or feared. The reason is that Tsatsi La Pallo is jaunty and jovial throughout, dominated by a rhythmic figure that seems to be trying to dispel any sense of disquiet while the lyrics refer to drumming and ‘beating in twos and threes’; this might even be a reference to African rhythm. Rhythm prevents doubt building up, in any case; but somehow below the surface, uncertainty remains. Like all of Moerane’s songs for Soprano and two Altos, this one is ingenious in its handling of harmony, counterpoint, and phrasing. In order to help choirs learn this song, a free mp3 of the lyrics spoken by Mpho Ndebele is downloadable when the song is purchased along with a rehearsal mp3 of the song at a slow tempo.
The audio sample below was generated from the Sibelius file of the score and the image on the right shows the first page of the score.