Star in the East
David Ashley White

Composer David Ashley White
Text Reginald Heber
Voicing SATB, organ, opt. percussion
Lectionary usage Epiphany
Price $2.00 (U.S.)
Length 2' 15" Released 11/93
Catalog no. 405-316
Difficulty Mod. easy

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Description
White has again taken a familiar hymn (the early American tune STAR IN THE EAST, unfortunately not in all current hymnals) and created a moving and expressive anthem. An energetic opening segues into a contrasting middle section (reminiscent of another early American tune, HOLY MANNA) and returns to the lively accompaniment and singing.

Text
Brightest and best of the stars of the morning,
dawn on our darkness, and lend us thine aid;
Star of the east, the horizon adoring,
guide where our infant Redeemer is laid.

Cold on his cradle the dewdrops are shining,
low lies his head with the beasts of the stall;
Angels adore him in slumber reclining,
Maker and Monarch and Savior of all.

Shall we then yield him, in costly devotion,
odors of Edom, and offerings divine,
gems of the mountain, and pearls of the ocean,
myrrh from the forest, and gold from the mine?

Vainly we offer each amply oblation,
vainly with gifts would his favor secure,
richer by far is the heart's adoration,
dearer to God are the prayers of the poor.

Brightest and best of the stars of the morning,
dawn on our darkness and lend us thine aid;
Star of the east, the horizon adorning,
guide where our infant Redeemer is laid.

Text: Reginald Heber

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review copy

Reviews
"Equally delicious, in a very different way, is the rambunctious joy of White's setting of the Sacred Harp tune STAR IN THE EAST ('Brightest and Best'). With the shimmer of finger cymbals, tambourine, and open fifths still in the air comes the unexpected-but-just-right use of HOLY MANNA in close harmony before the resinous original energy returns to sweep us home." -AAM Journal, Dec. 1994



 

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