They Shall Run and Be Free by Brant Karrick. Concert Band. Concert Band. Alfred Concert Band. Grade 4. Conductor Score & Parts. 292 pages. Published by Alfred Music (AP.31730).
This dramatic tone poem for concert band was written during the summer of 2007 after a moving visit to the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center in Cincinnati, Ohio. They Shall Run and Be Free portrays a daring and perilous slave escape. The opening main theme works its way through changing meters and dissonances and reflects running for oneâ€™s life while being chased and never knowing what to expect. The slow, middle section includes a setting of the beautiful Negro spiritual Oh Freedom, the simple yet poignant lyrics undoubtedly reflecting the attitude and desperation of many slaves.
Oh freedom over me!
And before Iâ€™d be a slave
Iâ€™d be buried in my grave
And go home to my Lord and be free.
List/syllabus: ISSMA Band 2011-12