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Faafetai i le Atua (vocal version)

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"Fa'afetai i le Atua" is a traditional Samoan thanksgiving hymn well known to many people of the Pacific. This version has been arranged by Siliva Gaugatao who also wrote the song 'Warm Pacific Greetings' also in this collection. It could be used to open or close a meeting, be sung as a waiata after a speech, be used to welcome or farewell Pacific guests, or be sung as part of a religious or solemn service.

The Samoan language relies significantly on the sounds of the five vowels, a, e, i, o, and u. To ensure clear and accurate diction, use a fluent speaker to say the words of the song aloud several times until the students' sounds become automatic. Either use the rhythms (only) of the words in the hymn and go over them phrase by phrase, or combine rhythm and melody while teaching one phrase at a time. If a number of students are familiar with the melody, you could support and encourage them to teach the harmony part to the rest of the group. Ensure a dotted minim "feel" for each beat, with a steady pulse throughout the hymn. Suggested dynamic markings have been provided in the lead sheet to ensure an element of contrast and enhancement of the meaning of the words.

The harmony provides a sound complement to the melody. Encourage students who are confident to make up other harmonies that fit in with the chordal structure to provide a "thicker" texture.


Thank you, Lord
our creator
for your love
to us all.
Let us sing and praise.
Hallelujah, thank you.

For more teaching suggestions go to
- Into Music

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