Holiday Prelude Concert
Fall 2011 Concert Notes
Tina Johns Heidrich, Conductor
Joe Jacovino, Accompanist
Connecticut Master Chorale Holiday Brass and Steel
Christmas Processional - Gloria in Excelsis Deo – Mack Wilberg
Filled with majesty and pageantry, this magnificent composition from the Director of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir was originally used as a processional for the choir. The joyful musical theme builds a sense of hope, spirit, and anticipation for the approaching holidays.
O Come, O Come, Emmanuel – Craig Curry
The traditional Ninth Century Latin Advent text is set to Mr. Curry’s bold and energetic original music which perfectly captures all the excitement of the Savior’s coming.
Carol of the Magi – John Rutter
A Christmas carol brought John Rutter his first attention from the public when he was only 18 and still in school. This hauntingly beautiful new piece features his classic soaring melodic lines and gorgeous harmonies. His lyrics tell the story of the Wise Men’s journey to the manger in Bethlehem with sensitivity and reverence.
Wells Jubilate – John Rutter
With a perfect theme to celebrate Thanksgiving, John Rutter used Psalm 100 as his text in this joyous work, written in 2009 for Matthew Owens and the Choirs of the historic Wells Cathedral in England.
Scots Nativity – Alan Bullard
With a traditional Scottish text telling the story of the Mother and Child in the manger, this lovely composition by the versatile British composer combines a lovely flowing melody with a lullaby refrain.
Gaudete – arr. Brian Kay
From Pić Cantiones, originally published in 1582, this well-known favorite has been given a lively treatment that is reflective of the title. “Gaudete” means “rejoice” and this jubilant arrangement was made for the King’s Singers, the renowned a cappella vocal ensemble, by Brian Kay who was the original bass in the group formed by six choral scholars in 1968.
Michael W. Smith
All Is Well – Michael W. Smith, lyrics Wayne Kirkpatrick, arr. Joseph Graham
Tranquil and moving, this a cappella arrangement of a contemporary song is filled with the gentle beauty of Christ’s birth and the peace it brings to earth.
Christmas Joy – Stephen Chatman
Guaranteed to put everyone in the mood for Christmas, this glorious festive medley opens and closes with exultant peals of “Noel, Noel, Sing Christmas Joy!” and includes unique arrangements of “Good King Wenceslas”, “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel”, “Here We Come A-wassailing”, “Noel Nouvelet” (‘Sing We Now of Christmas’), “Lo, How A Rose Ere Blooming”, and “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing”.
'Tis a Wonderful Thing – Randy Vader & Jay Rouse
This prolific pair of composers is well known for the eclectic nature and unique quality of their work. In New Orleans jazz style, this 2010 release rejoices at the “wonderful thing” that has happened in Bethlehem.
A La Ru – arr. Douglas Wagner
The use of two flutes enhances the charming and well-crafted setting of a traditional Hispanic carol that is popular in Mexico and New Mexico.
Sanctus and Joy to the World – Glenn McClure
The ever-popular steel drums are back again in two selections from “A Caribbean Christmas Mass”, a work that is not yet officially published. The composer, a faculty member at the Eastman School of Music and at SUNY Geneseo, is well known for his creative combinations of classical music with ethnic music traditions. The calypso inspired Sanctus and salsa version of Joy to the World are wonderful examples of his talents.
Ose Shalom – John Leavitt
A traditional Hebrew text (He Who Makes Peace) brings a simple message of peace in this inspired lyrical setting created by Dr. Leavitt.
Ritsch, Ratsch, Filibom – arr. Robert DeCormier
This traditional Swedish Christmas/St. Lucia carol has been given a spirited, effervescent arrangement by the renowned Julliard graduate.
1899 - 1984
Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening – Randall Thompson
Commissioned by the town of Amherst, Massachusetts to compose a choral work based on poetry by Robert Frost in honor of the town’s 200th anniversary, Randall Thompson created Frostiana, a seven movement choral piece based on seven Frost poems. The composer and the poet were good friends who respected each other as artists and shared a deep love of New England. Hearing it for the first time at the premiere, Frost was so impressed that he banned other composers from using his poetry. This selection for men’s voices embodies the quality and inspiration that Thompson brought to Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening, with lush harmonies and a sense of quiet beauty.
Merry Christmas, Darling – Richard Carpenter, lyrics Frank Pooler, arr. Kirby Shaw
This romantic Christmas classic from the repertoire of The Carpenters was written by Richard Carpenter and the lyrics are by Frank Pooler, who was the choral director at the college the brother and sister act attended. Kirby Shaw’s arrangement for women’s voices is stellar.
Every Light that Shines at Christmas – Ernie Haase, Wayne Haun and Joel Lindsey, arr. Wayne Haun
Here is a new Southern treat from the creative genius of Dove Award winner Wayne Haun, popular gospel songwriter Joel Lindsey and Ernie Haase of Signature Sound. With great harmonies, a bass line that moves and an accompaniment that will have everyone up on their feet clapping along, this exhilarating Gospel number is pure fun!