Gwyneth Walker

Handfuls of Love!

for Soprano and Piano (2006)
for Soprano, Mezzo-Soprano, and Piano (2007)
for Soprano, Mezzo-Soprano, and String Quartet (2009)

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Download an MP3 file of a performance of this work by Marjorie Drysdale, soprano, Linda Radtke, mezzo-soprano, and Arioso.

Download a PDF file of the full score (solo version) of this composition. This score may be printed and duplicated for the purposes of performances.

Download a PDF file of the full score (duet version) of this composition. This score may be printed and duplicated for the purposes of performances.

Download a PDF file of the full score (string quartet version) of this composition. This score may be printed and duplicated for the purposes of performances.

Download a PDF file of the string quartet parts (string quartet version) of this composition. This score may be printed and duplicated for the purposes of performances.


Handfuls of Love! is a medley of Shaker songs, spanning a range of characteristics often associated with Shaker repertoire. The opening "More Love!" is celebratory, in a bouncing 6/8 meter suggestive of Shaker dancing tunes. This leads into "Brilliant Gem," a reflective and ecstatic song, soaring into higher voice ranges while singing of the 'souls who shine...far brighter than the sun’. A return to the 6/8 meter heralds the arrival of "Love by the Handful," a children’s song. ‘Here’s love by the handful, here’s love by the ball. Here’s love for the elders, and love for you all.’ The astute listener might hear patterns suggestive of bouncing balls as countermotives to the melody. The medley then returns to "More Love" for the ending.

Notes by the composer