Autograph manuscript of part of "A Lincoln Portrait for speaker and orchestra", signed and dated ("Aaron Copland (1942)")
- ink on paper
Copland's "Lincoln Portrait" was by far the most often performed of his orchestral pieces. The work incorporates spoken excerpts from Lincoln's speeches, and nineteenth-century American tunes, with Copland's own preludes and accompaniments. Copland wrote: "The first section opens with a somber sound of violins and violas playing a dotted figure that turns into a melodic phrase by the eighth bar...my purpose was to draw a simple but expressive frame around the words of Lincoln himself".