Ben Unleashed for five soloists (SSATB) and piano; commissioned by Lyric Fest of Philadelphia and first performed at the Academy of Vocal Arts, Philadelphia, October 14, 2012.
(adapted by the composer from the writings of Ben Franklin)
He that lies down with dogs shall rise up with fleas.
A learned blockhead is a greater blockhead than an ignorant one.
Want of care does more damage than want of knowledge.
Drink does not drown Care, but waters it, and makes it grow faster.
Work as if you were to live a hundred years,
Pray as if you were to die tomorrow.
He that lives on hope will die fasting.
A slip of the foot you may soon recover:
But a slip of the tongue you may never get over.
He that has neither fools, whores nor beggars among his kindred, is the son of a thunder-gust.
None preaches better than the ant, and she says nothing.
The excellency of hogs is fatness, of men virtue.
He that scatters Thorns, let him not go barefoot.
Mary's mouth costs her nothing, for she never opens it but at others expence.
The noblest question in the world is
What Good may I do in it?
Think of three things:
whence you came,
where you are going,
and to whom you must account.
The poor have little;
The rich too much;
Enough not one.
Fear not death; for the sooner we die,
the longer shall we be immortal.
The sleeping Fox catches no poultry. Up! Up!
If you would not be forgotten
as soon as you are dead and rotten
either write things worth reading
or do things worth writing.
In prosperous fortunes be modest and wise,
The greatest may fall, and the lowest may rise:
But insolent People that fall in disgrace,
Are wretched and no-body pities their Case.
He that would live in peace & at ease,
Must not speak all he knows,
nor judge all he sees.
Three may keep a secret,
if two of them are dead.
He that falls in love with himself, will have no Rivals.
- Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790)