In Horace's Ode, Leuconoe is encouraged to indulge in the present, as the future is uncertain. The Latin phrase carpe diem is popularly translated as "seize the day," although a more literal translation of carpe would be "pluck" as in the picking or plucking of fruit.
"Carpe Diem" begins with rich sonorous textures, evolving into a rhythmic mixed meter dance accompanied by tambourine. Like a party winding down, it finishes as it began with lush chords like a big red wine. "Carpe Diem" was commissioned in 2008 by the Northwest Chamber Chorus (Seattle) in celebration of its 40th anniversary.
|SBMP 862||SATB, alto solo, tambourine||4:45||$2.35||https://www.joanszymko.com/sites/joanszymko.com/files/audio_samples/Carpe%20Diem.mp3||Publisher Link|
“a gold-medal moment in a silver-medal evening.” — The Seattle Times
"Perhaps the most delightful work on the second half was the next-to-last one, a setting of bibulous words from a Horace Ode by Joan Szymko commissioned by the Northwest Chamber Choir of Seattle. Rich choral textures were interrupted and enlivened by a sudden rhythmic groove from a tambourine…as the title refrain “Carpe Diem” was chanted and devolved into what sounded like nonsense syllables. Then the final advice: “Seize the day, but be wise (Sapias)!" — Clevelandclassical.com