home
ministers letter
calendar
notices
news and views
reflections
photographs
halls for hire
our history
our values
contact
 

 

CHURCH FAMILY NEWS

DESERT ISLAND CAROLS


I had hoped to include another Desert Island Hymns this time; but none appeared, so I
am forced to offer you my own Desert Island Carols [in no particular order]. I am sure
that if I were stranded on a desert island [and, assuming that I knew the date] I would
sing the carols I remembered during the Christmas Season, at least there no-one would
be listening!


SEE AMID THE WINTER SNOW : I have loved this since secondary school, when us
basses sang the verse “As we watched at dead of night...


WHAT CHILD IS THIS : a Christmas carol whose lyrics were written by William
Chatterton Dix, in 1865 in England and subsequently set to the tune of "Greensleeves",


IN THE BLEAK MIDWINTER : The wonderful setting of Christina Rosetti’s poem to the
music of Gustav Holst.


O HOLY NIGHT: composed by Adolphe Adam in 1847 to the French poem "Minuit,
chrétiens" (Midnight, Christians) by a wine merchant and poet, Placide Cappeau (1808–
1877). Unitarian minister John Sullivan Dwight, editor of Dwight's Journal of Music,
created a singing edition based on Cappeau's French text in 1855.


GABRIEL'S MESSAGE / THE ANGEL GABRIEL FROM HEAVEN CAME : This is
a Basque Christmas folk carol. It was collected by Charles Bordes and then paraphrased
into English by Sabine Baring-Gould.


O COME, O COME, EMMANUEL : The words and the music of "O Come, O Come,
Emmanuel" developed separately. The Latin text is first documented in Germany in
1710, whereas the tune most familiar in the English-speaking world has its origins in
15th-century France.


SHEPHERDS ARISE! [SING,SING, ALL EARTH]: Probably the best example of a carol
from The English Folk Tradition; my favourite versions are, firstly, by the wonderful
acapella group, Coope, Boyes & Simpson; and most memorably, that sung in The
National Theatre production of The Mysteries, by The Home Service, the cast and the
audience [including me].


COVENTRY CAROL (LULLAY, THOU TINY LITTLE CHILD) - Hauntingly beautiful
Well, as they say that’s a wrap! But I cannot end without adding my favourite secular
Christmas song—Johnny Mathis singing “When A Child Is Born”
As for my book—that is really difficult and rather boringly I would want a Complete
Shakespeare, so I could wander around the island declaiming in the manner of Olivier,
Burton or Brando.
And my luxury? A unfading picture of my grandchildren.


HAPPY CHRISTMAS from JOHN

 

 

 

Top

Top