"Very often, therefore,
in human affairs we are subject to Saturn,
through idleness, solitude, or strength, through Theology, and
more secret philosophy, through superstition, Magic, agriculture
and through sadness."
- Marsilio Ficino (1433-1499)
from The Book of Life
For the cast recording of the show "Saturn Returns" by Adam Guettel the title was changed to reflect the omission of several songs from the actual Off Broadway production. The original title referred to Saturn's 29 year cycle around the sun, considered to be a time of reassessment. Musically, the songs encompass several distinct styles from country western ballads and gospel to more conventional Broadway showtunes.
In the libretto, Adam Guettel sets forth the following description of the work:
"Many of these songs are adapted from Greek myths and from lyrics I found in an old hymnal in a used bookshop. I used these dissimilar cosmologies as points of departure and discovered as I went along that they have a lot in common- a desire to transcend earthly bounds, to bond with something or someone greater. They seem to complement each other, reflecting different parts of us: the myths, our behaviours, the hymns, our prayers."
All quotes taken from the libretto of the original cast recording