Fantasy on Simple Gifts
The traditional Shaker tune, commonly known as "Simple Gifts" has been given new life in Brian’s amazing arrangement for handbells, optional auxiliary bells, flute, and 'cello. The dynamic introduction sets the stage with bells, flute, and cello hinting at the main melody while establishing the character of this setting, which leads into a playful entrance of the song using TD and mallets in the accompaniment. Handchimes shine in this gentle section followed by a well-crafted, contrapuntal segue to an ethereal development featuring the melody in 'cello and handchimes. The final section begins with the melody rung in the 4's and the 'cello with the flute adding the icing on this musical cake as it revisits the style established in the beginning. The ending is musically sophisticated, creative, and elegant.
This glorious setting has tones, textures, and interplay among parts and instruments that are superb, making it the perfect selection for all groups Level 3 and beyond to have in your repertoire for those occasions calling for a stellar work!
Performance recording courtesy of the Myers Park UMC Adult Handbell Choir, Charlotte, NC, Brian Childers, Director