First performance by the Gotlands Körförbunds Kör conducted by Ingvar Stagling, St Mary's Cathedral, Visby, Sweden, 27 September 2009
Listen to ‘Chimney-sweepers’ at the end of Elegy in a Country Graveyard:
Andrew Ford: Chimney-sweepers (2006)
for four-part choir (SATB)
This setting of the funeral oration from Shakespeare’s Cymbeline is a reworking of a solo song composed for the soprano, Yvonne Kenny for the 2007 Kangaroo Valley Festival, ‘Arts in the Valley’.
This version forms the final four minutes of Elegy in a Country Graveyard, for voices, instruments and pre-recorded sounds, but it may, of course, be performed as an independent choral item.
Fear no more the heat o’ the sun,
Nor the furious winter’s rages;
Thou thy worldly task hast done,
Home art gone, and ta’en thy wages:
Golden lads and girls all must,
As chimney-sweepers, come to dust.
Fear no more the frown o’ the great;
Thou art past the tyrant’s stroke:
Care no more to clothe and eat;
To thee the reed is as the oak:
The sceptre, learning, physic, must
All follow this, and come to dust.
Fear no more the lightning-flash,
Nor the all-dreaded thunder-stone;
Fear not slander, censure rash;
Thou hast finish’d joy and moan:
All lovers young, all lovers must
Consign to thee, and come to dust.
No exorciser harm thee!
Nor no witchcraft charm thee!
Ghost unlaid forbear thee!
Nothing will come near thee!
Quiet consummation have;
And renowned be thy grave!
(Cymbeline, IV, 2)