Christmas Bells - Jamie W. Hall

Duration: 2'45"
Ensemble: Flexible children SA SATB
Grading: Easy/Medium
CMP201 Full score £2.50

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It wouldn't be Christmas without a ding dong or two and this new setting of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's Christmas Bells buys wholeheartedly into that tradition, its pealing piano figures crossing bar lines and giving a contemporary seasoning to a carol which is nevertheless singable and memorable.

Composed with children in mind it has two vocal lines which may be thought of as either two equal voices or low and high voices, though the ranges are restricted to enable just about any choir to sing it. Suggestions of SATB distributions are included but flexibility is there to redistribute depending on the forces available.

The piece is neither overtly religious nor exclusively Christian, its overriding theme being one of peace and goodwill to all men, and so it is particularly useful to choirs who wish to celebrate Christmas without too much emphasis on sacred music.