Chilcott: Christmas Oratorio vocal score
Mixed Voices (SATB+)
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Publisher: Oxford University Press
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for SATB and soloists (M-S, T, & B), with organ and flute or small ensemble With this majestic work Chilcott takes on a landmark of the choral repertory, the Christmas Oratorio. Words from St Luke and St Matthew are intertwined with 16th-19th-century poetry to create a compelling retelling of the Christmas story. Five hymn texts are set to new, original melodies that take their place among the season's tradition of great hymnody and enable the audience or congregation to join in with the choir. As in the St John Passion, much of the narrative is presented by a tenor soloist in the role of Evangelist, with focal points such as the Magnificat and Nunc dimittis and Rossetti's 'Love came down at Christmas' taken by mezzo-soprano and bass soloists. The chorus is integral to the storytelling, assuming small character roles and taking centre stage in two unaccompanied movements. A solo flute characterizes the angels, and the mellow tones of the brass ensemble evoke a sense of festive tradition.
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