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Simple Gifts


(2-part treble chorus, piano) 2'10"



Graceful and unhurried, this setting of the familiar Shaker tune is mostly unison, with occasional 2-part singing. Appropriate for younger and older treble choirs. Part of the set Early American Songs, Set I.



Listen (Children's Chorus of the Honors Choirs of Southeast Minnesota, Amy Nelson conducting)


View PDF



Choral Score: $1.50 Add to Cart



Composer's Notes:

This arrangement is part of the set Early American Songs, Set I. The other pieces in the set are: The Pretty Little Horses and She'll Be Comin' 'Round the Mountain, also available separately.


The melody and text of "Simple Gifts" are often assumed to be derived from a folk song, which usually implies that they are of unknown origin. There is proof, however, that Elder Joseph Brackett, a citizen of Maine and member of the Shaker community in the 19th century, is the composer of both the words and tune. The melody became world famous primarily through American composer Aaron Copland who included it in his ballet score Appalachian Spring in 1944.