Farrington - Run, shepherds (choir): PDF download
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Run, shepherds - for SATB choir and piano
Run, shepherds is a setting of a 17th century poem by William Drummond. The text is a paraphrase on the angels’ proclamation to the shepherds, announcing the birth of Jesus. It is a poem that contrasts energy and excitement with intimacy and wonder, and this setting closely follows these changing moods. The musical style is decidedly un-Anglican, with strong jazz harmony and rhythms, nightclub piano figurations and exuberant gospel choir exclamations. The opening words ‘Run, shepherds, run’ are used as a lively refrain that are repeated at various points in the piece. After the initial burst of energy, the scene shifts to the ‘poor cottage inned’, with the music taking on a slow bluesy after-hours quality. The atmosphere darkens as the significance and ultimate tragedy of this event is realised. This is swiftly dispatched with a recurrence of the opening positive music, and the final words are sung with a swinging gospel-influenced exaltation.
Duration: 4.5 mins