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Lucy has come to her father (Lockit, owner and manager of Newgate prison) to plead for the life of MacHeath.
This is marked as two separate songs in the script of the play. The first was originally a dance tune called "Of a noble race was Shenkin"; the second is not credited with any title at all, and I can find no provenance for the words "Twang dang dillo dee"; however, I did like them, they sounded metallic, reminiscent of iron bars and chains, and I though maybe Lockit might have been working on something "practical" while he was singing this. The guitar needs to be made to sound as metallic and twangy as possible here.
I set the two of them together in a very archaic baroque contrapuntal style, full of false relations, but there's not reason why they should not still sound very expressive. I should warn you that you need singers who can count!
Reviews of The Beggar's Opera: 28. Is then his Fate Decree'd. Sir?
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