|As Shepherds in Jewry||
An arrangement of the Billings carol "Judea."
|Away in a Manger (Rollett)||
This arrangement pairs the traditional text with an Irish folk tune. This tune is called “The Meeting of the Waters”, and has nothing whatsoever to do with Christmas. However, it fits the traditional Christmas text very nicely, having a very lullabyish feel to it, if I may be allowed to coin a term of highly limited usefulness. This is accompanied by organ and obbligato soprano instrument - either flute or oboe would work, as, I suppose, would a violin.
A performance of this arrangement may be heard on The Pittsburgh Camerata's album "A Pittsburgh Wassail." It is available on iTunes.
|Away in a manger (Young)||
An innovative and beautiful arrangement by Pittsburgh composer Lenny Young.
Not, as you might expect, a carol culled from an old Hank Williams recording, but a Danish carol on a text by Hans Christian Anderson and tune by Neils Gade. Text is Danish - a translation is zipped with the other files. As to pronunciation, you're on your own. When The Pittsburgh Camerata performed it, my husband fortuitously had a conference in Denmark several months before, and was able to persuade one of his colleagues to read the text for him onto a recording device. Unfortunately I have long ago lost that, but may still have the IPA file I made sitting around... If I find it I will add it to the files and update this post.
Update - amazingly enough, I found it, so the IPA is zipped with the other files.
The tune of Coverdale's Carol is an English folk song collected by Ralph Vaughan Williams in the early 20th century. Vaughan Williams commented “The melody was noted from Mrs. Esther Smith, sung by her to the strange carol or song about the farmer who ploughed on Christmas day.” He set it to a 1546 text by Miles Coverdale. I chose it for the beautiful modal melody and uneven meter. My setting is intended to capture the simplicity of the tune and emphasize the modal harmonies. The oboe is used for its plaintive and haunting character.
|D'où viens-tu, bergère?||
An arrangement of the French Canadian carol. This is a rather perky arrangement, with a shepherd-like drone. The text describes a shepherdess being grilled by her colleagues as to where she had been, and she describes the scene at the manger, the kneeling animals, and the descending angels.
Text is French. A translation of the text is zipped with the other files for download.
|El desembre congelat||
This is an arrangement of a traditional Catalan carol. The organ part borrows heavily from Louis-Claude Daquin's organ noel. You could use piano, but it really wouldn't be the same, and I wouldn't recommend it.
Text is Catalan. The translation I had at the time my group performed this was not very accurate. I have since found a better one - it is available on Choral Public Domain Library.
This lovely Mexican carol is a "rorro," or cradle song. I used this for a Christmas concert titled "Carols of the Animals." I figured that I could search the world over and probably not find another Christmas carol that mentions mosquitoes. It is set for a cappella chorus and oboe.
The text is Spanish. A translation of the text is zipped with the files for download.
|Es ist ein Ros'||
A short, rather "Baroque-y" arrangement of this well-loved hymn.
German text - a translation is zipped with the other files.
|Fum, fum, fum||
An arrangement of the traditional Catalan carol, with English translation. This translation is more true to the original than the secular version often seen.
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