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Library Research Guides

Finding English Translations of Vocal Music Texts

Guide to sources of English translations of song and aria texts. Many of these provide phonetic readings in addition to poetic and/or word-for-word translations.

Online Resource

Translations by Language

French

Castel, Nico. French Opera Libretti. [IPA included]
Reference: ML 48 .F74 1999

Jeffers, Ron. Translations and Annotations of Choral Repertoire. Vol III: French and Italian Texts.
Reference: ML 47 .T7211 1988 v.3

Johnson, Graham, and Richard Stokes. A French Song Companion.
Reference: ML 54.6 .F74 J761 2000

LeVan, Timothy. Masters of the French Art Song: Translations of the Complete Songs of Chausson, Debussy, Duparc, Fauré & Ravel.
Reference: ML 54.6 .M331 2001

Coffin, Berton, Werner Singer, and Pierre Delattre. Word-by-Word Translations of Songs and Arias. Part I: German and French.
Reference: ML 54.6 .W92 pt.1

German

Castel, Nico. German Miscellaneous Opera Libretti. [IPA included]
Reference: ML 48 .G473 2005

Fischer-Dieskau, Dietrich. The Fischer-Dieskau Book of Lieder: The Original Texts of Over Seven-Hundred and Fifty Songs.
Reference: ML 54.6 .F53

Phillips, Lois. Lieder Line by Line, and Word for Word.
Reference: ML 54.6 .P55 L51 1996

Miller, Philip Lieson. German Lieder.
Reference: ML 54.6 .G2751 1990

Coffin, Berton, Werner Singer, and Pierre Delattre. Word-by-Word Translations of Songs and Arias. Part I: German and French.
Reference: ML 54.6 .W92 pt.1

Jeffers, Ron. Translations and Annotations of Choral Repertoire. Vol II: German Texts.
Reference: ML 47 .T7211 1988 v.2

Italian

Castel, Nico. Italian Belcanto Opera Libretti. [IPA included]
Reference: ML 48 .I8821 2000

Castel, Nico. Italian Verismo Opera Libretti. [IPA included]
Reference: ML 48 .I884 2000

Gerhart, Martha. Italian Song Texts from the 17th through the 20th Centuries. [IPA included]
Reference: ML 54.6 .I83 2002 v.1-2

Jeffers, Ron. Translations and Annotations of Choral Repertoire. Vol III: French and Italian Texts.
Reference: ML 47 .T7211 1988 v.3

LeVan, Timothy. Masters of the Italian Art Song: Word-by-Word and Poetic Translations of the Complete Songs for Voice and Piano.
Reference: ML 54.6 .M341 1990

Richardson, Dorothy, and Tina Ruta. Arie Antiche.
Reference: ML 54.6 .A751 1990

Schoep, Arthur, and Daniel Harris. Word-by-Word Translations of Songs and Arias. Part II: Italian.
Reference: ML 54.6 .W92 pt.2

Russian

Belov, Anton. Libretti of Russian Operas. [IPA included]
Reference: ML 48 .L68 2004

Piatak, Jean, and Regina Avrashov. Russian Songs & Arias: Phonetic Readings, Word-by-Word Translations, and a Concise Guide to Russian Diction. [IPA included]
Reference: MT 883 .P5411 1991

Richter, Laurence R. Selected Nineteenth Century Russian Song Texts: Russian Texts of Songs by Abaza, Aliabiev, Arensky, Balakirev, Borodin, Bulakhov, Cui, Dargomyzhsky, Dubuque, Glinka, Gurilyov, Kharito, Rimsky-Korsakov, Rubinstein, Varlamov, Verstovsky, and Yakovlev. [IPA included]
Reference: ML 54.6 .R52 S45 2005

Spanish

Cockburn, Jacqueline, and Richard Stokes. The Spanish Song Companion.
Reference: ML 54.6 .S76 2006
ML 2547 .C6211 1992

Sobrer, Josep Miquel, and Edmon Colomer. The Singer's Anthology of 20th Century Spanish Songs. [IPA included]
PQ 6187 .S551 1987
(Includes the texts of songs by Granados, Falla, and Mompou.)

Czech

Cheek, Timothy. Singing in Czech: A Guide to Czech Lyric Diction and Vocal Repertoire. [IPA included]
Reference: MT 883 .C441 2001

Latin

Hines, Robert S. Singers' Liturgical Latin: Rules for Pronunciation Plus Standard Texts with IPA Transcriptions and English Translations.
Reference: MT 833 .H551 2003

Jeffers, Ron. Translations and Annotations of Choral Repertoire. Vol. I: Sacred Latin Texts.
Reference: ML 47 .T7211 1988 v.1

Various Languages

Miller, Philip L. The Ring of Words: An Anthology of Song Texts.
Reference: ML 54.6 .M65
(Includes the texts of selected German, French, Italian, Russian, Scandinavian, and Spanish songs.)

Retzlaff, Jonathan. Exploring Art Song Lyrics. [IPA included]
Reference: ML 54.6 .R48 2012
(Includes Italian, German, and French repertoire)