Tori Amos has released the beautifully complex “Darkest Hour,” an aching, striving number from the upcoming original cast recording of her debut musical, The Light Princess.
Amos penned the music for The Light Princess, which tells the story of Althea, a princess who escapes her wicked, oppressive father and tries to regain her gravity and ability to cry, both of which she lost after her mother died. The script was written by playwright Samuel Adamson and is loosely based on George MacDonald’s 19th-century fairy tale of the same name.
Sung by Rosalie Craig, who played Princess Althea during the show’s run at London’s Royal National Theater, “Darkest Hour” is a steady, intricately arranged ballad grounded by soft piano and stirring strings. According to Vulture, where the song premiered, “Darkest Hour” is a confessional outpouring that Althea delivers when all seems lost — yet, its melodies drift beautifully between conveying hopelessness and hope, a delicate dance encapsulated perfectly by Craig’s final vocal turn.
“When we reach this point in the musical, even though she has been freed from the shackles of torture placed there by her father, the Light Princess chooses to take her own life in the hidden lake,” Amos told Vulture. “The lake hears her sing ‘Darkest Hour’ and provides her with a different solution.”
The original cast recording of The Light Princess is slated for release on October 9th, and will feature two new songs sung by Amos. After a temporary delay, The Light Princess premiered in London to strong reviews in 2013. As of last year, Amos was still considering a Broadway run for the show.