It Takes a Village


West African adage adapted by Joan Szymko

In adapting the west African saying,"it takes a village to raise a child," I sought to embody the cultural concept behind this proverb—that it is truly all the individual parts linked and working together that create and support the whole. The four vocal rhythms in the main portion of the work, each with its own character and function, are essential to creating the unique energy and movement of "Village." Only when they are sung together does a truly joyful spirit arrive.


Item Voicing/Instrumentation Duration Price Audio View Score Quantity
SBMP 328 SSAA, hand drum, shekere 3:50 $2.05
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SBMP 331 SATB, hand drum, shekere 3:50 $2.15
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SBMP 1127 TTBB, hand drum, shekere 3:50 $2.05
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It Takes a Village

It takes a whole village to raise our children

It takes a whole village to raise one child

We all everyone must share the burden

We all everyone will share the joy


Since its "break out" performance at the 2005 ACDA National Conference by the University of Delaware Chorale directed Dr. Paul Head, "It Takes a Village" has received countless performances across North America. It is Joan Szymko's most frequently performed sung work. It's infectious energy is joyous and communicates the strength of community.


It Takes a Village | by Joan Szymko