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Three Christmas carols

Sheet Music: Score

Three Christmas carols / music arranged by Brett M McKern.

by Brett McKern (2007)

  • Purchase Price: $10.91 (Usually ships in 1-4 days) — Add to Cart
  • Library Availability: 782.28/MCK 2 — Reference (not for loan) copy only
  • Instrumentation: Ding dong! - SSATB choir unaccompanied ; Gabriel's message - SATB choir, organ ; While shepherds watched their flocks - SATB choir, organ or piano.


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All of these carols use sixteenth and seventeenth century melodies. The first two carols are very famous melodies. The third has a very famous text set here to an old tune contemporary with the text. The melody is called 'In der Wiegen' and suits a carol text very well.

All three settings are for choir. These are not intended as congregational settings, but more as the type of anthem or motet that may be used in the appropriate season or at a carol service.

Ding Dong! is a bright and chirpy arrangement with a hint of jazz style in the verse accompaniment. The non-melodic parts are intended to sounds as bells of varying sizes, and thus it is recommended that the singers sing on the 'ng' sound of 'ding' and 'dong'. Dynamics have been left to the choral director, and a tempo marking is deliberately absent, but faster rather than slower is preferable.

Gabriel's Message is a well-known annunciationtide text. The text includes three characters: Mary, Gabriel and the narrator. The setting is quite conversational and all three characters have distinctive parts sung by various voices. Although there are short organ interludes between the unaccompanied verses, the whole could be sung unaccompanied if these organ sections are omitted.

While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks is set in a homophonic style for the first four verses, and this arrangement could be used throughout a capella if preferred. Verse five is set as a faux bourdon with the melody in the tenor part. The last verse has a descant for the sopranos and the melody is otherwise sung in unison, the accompaniment filling in the harmony. The accompaniment could be played on organ or piano.

Published by: Wirripang [9790720078908] — 1 score (16p. -- A4 (portrait))

Difficulty: Medium — 'Ding Dong!' is of advanced difficulty

Duration: 7 mins, 40 sec.

Contents note:

Ding dong! (2 min., 10 sec.) -- Gabriel's message (2 min.) --  While shepherds watched their flocks by night (3 min., 30 sec.).

Dedication note: 'Gabriel's Message' is dedicated to Meg Shaw.
Commission info: 'Gabriel's Message' is arranged for The Cathedral Singers new CD, Advent 2007.

First performance by The Cathedral Singers, Mervyn Byers — 2 Dec 07. Advent Carols Service, St Alban's Church, Leura, Blue Mountains, NSW

Includes program notes, full lyrics and biographical notes on the composer.

Typeset edition.

ISMN: 9790720078908

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