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Trouble in a Minnesota Town

A town's wild descent into madness — and mangoes!
Neal Bowers

Habanera, tango and operatic melodrama meet in this dramatic (and funny) song, in which a town’s descent into madness involves public demonstrations, Latin dance, and fruit.

Vocal Range: d-f'

Item Instrumentation/Voicing Duration Level Audio Peruse Delivery Method (Print vs. Digital) Price Quantity
SEA-047-00 medium voice, piano - Piano/Vocal Score
6 MA Sheet Music $7.00
SEA-047-01 high voice, piano - Piano/Vocal Score
6' MA Sheet Music $7.00

Trouble In a Minnesota Town

Poem by Neal Bowers

The sign in the grocery window says,
and everyone who passes
is seized with a tropical longing:
the sun sets hot orange;
a dense perfume
loiters along the street;
on the tongue is the memory
of something softer than spun honey.

Before daylight, the whole town
is mad for the flavor of mangoes.
A spicy sweetness, almost a cross
between cloves and ginger,
lodges in the brain like a stuck tune.
By noon the record shop
has sold out of calypso albums;
reggae and salsa are going fast.
In the square, someone is showing how
to dance the mambo, the rumba,
pleading for a partner to tango,
por favor, por favor.

When the sign goes up announcing
a sale on papayas, guavas, bananas, avocados,
it is already too late.
The people have begun to paint
their slogan on the walls--
and the mayor has received
a list of demands:


Premiere: Arthur Krieck. Charles Ives Center for American Music (New Milford, CT)
Andy Wilkowske / Elizabeth Alexander (St. Paul, MN)
Arthur Krieck. Adirondack Festival of American Music (Saranac Lake, NY)
Arthur Krieck. St. Peter's Cathedral. (New York City, NY)
Bradley Greenwald (St. Paul, MN)
David Gagnon. Wisconsin Alliance of Composers. (Madison, WI)
Eric Howe. Sounds New. (Kensington, CA)
Wendy Matsutani & Jessica Johnston. Source Song Festival. (Minneapolis, MN)

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