BROOKS-DAVIES: We Stood on the Hills, Lady (The Shepherds’ Gift) SATB a cappella

Year of composition
2006
Difficulty
Moderate (Grades 4-6)
Duration
4 minutes
Genre
Other
Instrumentation
Choir
Instrumental parts
Not available
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The words of this beautiful anonymous Christmas carol - the origins of which are lost in the mists of time - have haunted me for many years. Gradually a setting for choir began to play in my mind and in 2006 I completed a version for my church Music Group choir which required an accompaniment. I have already posted the original version on this site. But it became clear to me that I really wanted the piece sung a cappella; that this was the only way my setting could really do some kind of justice to the simple loveliness of the words. The text has no title; Bob Chilcott’s distinguished setting (2000) for King’s, chooses ’The Shepherd’s Carol’; I have chosen ’The Shepherds’ Gift’: I imagine all the shepherds singing it, not one; I also see it as the shepherds’ offering, the only one they can bring, to the Virgin, Baby and Joseph. NB Piano short score for rehearsal only.

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