Christmas music! (mainly of the classical variety)

Discussion of performing arts, including theatre, film, television, and music.
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Pearly Di
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Christmas music! (mainly of the classical variety)

Post by Pearly Di »

:banana:

I was inspired by a thread of Estel's over at B77. 8)

What are your favourites?

I've got the recording of Messiah by Harry Christopher's Sixteen and highly commend it.

Also, John Rutter. I can easily overdose on Rutter, I can find him a bit too sugary, but I do love many of his carols, and his Christmas albums always include some classical/baroque/renaissance stuff. I've long loved his beautiful Christmas Night album, with the Cambridge Singers.

I would also recommend this lovely recording of his music by Polyphony:
http://www.amazon.co.uk/John-Rutter-Fra ... 320&sr=1-3

I also like medieval stuff. Some years ago my sister gave me A Star in the East by Anonymous 4 -- Hungarian medieval Christmas music!

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Star-East-Medie ... 160&sr=1-5
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Lalaith
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Post by Lalaith »

Oh, I'd bet I'd like that last one especially. I love medieval and Renaissance music! I'll have to check it out.

I stumbled upon this CD a long time ago and have enjoyed it:

http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/a-scot ... id36138693

I have to run now, but I'll check back later!
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Post by Holbytla »

I can't remember the particular recording or orchestra, but I do like some Tchaikovsky.
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Lalaith
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Post by Lalaith »

Pearly Di, I couldn't find an exact match to the Hungarian CD you listed, but I found a similar one on iTunes. ?? (I wonder if it's the same.)

http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/christ ... d101841367

As for other Christmas music I like, of course, Mannheim Steamroller. Enya has a nice CD:

http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/and-wi ... d295597610

Sting released an interesting one this year, too:

http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/if-on- ... d332118159


I'll have to wait to list any others, since they are on my other computer.
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Lalaith
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Post by Lalaith »

Here is another one by Maggie Sansone, Ancient Noels:

http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/ancien ... id36007807


This one isn't bad either:

http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/irish- ... d266078269


(Eden's Bridge, Celtic Christmas)

I think I'll be buying the similar Hungarian Anonymous 4 album I found on American iTunes. I'd like to have the antiphons for this week.
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Post by Elentári »

Gramophone Magazine's "Critic's choice" for Christmas:


http://www.prestoclassical.co.uk/r/Herald/HAVP350

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...from my son's very own cathedral choir :love:

(unfortunately he was still a probationer when this was recorded back in Feb this year, and wasn't allowed to sing on the recording, but his photo is still used on the back of the cover notes!!! :D )
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Primula Baggins
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Post by Primula Baggins »

That is so cool, Elen! :love:

The boys on the front cover look sooooo angelic. :twisted: Choristers that age are such fun. They're very much boys their age until they line up and start to sing, and suddenly the angel idea doesn't seem so far off. . . .
“There, peeping among the cloud-wrack above a dark tor high up in the mountains, Sam saw a white star twinkle for a while. The beauty of it smote his heart, as he looked up out of the forsaken land, and hope returned to him. For like a shaft, clear and cold, the thought pierced him that in the end the Shadow was only a small and passing thing: there was light and high beauty for ever beyond its reach.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King
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WampusCat
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Post by WampusCat »

My favorites:

Benjamin Britten's Ceremony of Carols

Charpentier's Messe de minuit pour Noel

Kim Robertson's Celtic Christmas(harp music)

and her follow-up, Celtic Christmas II
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Pearly Di
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Post by Pearly Di »

I love the Britten. :)

That's great about your son and the choir, Elen. :D

About to leave for my Christmas break, so leaving you all with this:

the angelic choirboys of King's College, Cambridge:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cm3fZDZxiko
"Frodo undertook his quest out of love - to save the world he knew from disaster at his own expense, if he could ... "
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Post by Elentári »

Thanks, Di (& Prim) :)

I am indeed so very proud of all my children, but feel especially privileged that my youngest son is a part of this wonderful tradition and heritage in my country. (Love the Elizabath Poston carol, btw and have happy memories of singing it myself years ago.)

Wishing you a Holy and Blessed Christmas, Di - great news about your Dad :hug:
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MithLuin
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Post by MithLuin »

Hmm, I have Enya's CD, but I haven't listened to it yet this year. Celtic Woman also did a Christmas concert (A Christmas Celebration), which is very nice: O Holy Night

I also like Trans-Siberian Orchestra, though I was disappointed when I found out they weren't from Siberia ;). Christmas Eve Sarajevo is probably one of my favorite renditions of Carol of the Bells.

Growing up, we always listened to Boston Pops Christmas music, so I like their version of the 12 days of Christmas (it includes '3 French horns,' among other things), but of course Sleigh Ride is the best!

My favorite Advent song is O Come O Come Emmanuel, but since it's the last day of Advent today, I don't mind linking it. :)

Merry Christmas, everyone!
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Post by N.E. Brigand »

My favorite Christmas choral performance is Chanticleer singing Franz Biebl's setting of "Ave Maria".
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Padme
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Post by Padme »

I love Ave Maria...

This year this version of this song has been my favorite.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1owsa8v7fb4
From the ashes, a fire shall be woken. A light from the shadow shall spring. Renewed shall be blade that was broken. The crownless again shall be king.

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Post by axordil »

I managed to build a Pandora channel with just enough variety, and few enough breathy vocals and James Taylor songs, to satisfy my need for Music of the Christmas Season. The best thing about Pandora is I don't have to know the artists in question, just determine whether I like the product. Of course, in the process, I discover artists I like, ones which would have been hard for me track down, like Blackmore's Night.

It's on my Facebook page now. God Bless Us Every One.
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Post by truehobbit »

Ok, Christmas is over, but I thought I should add Bach's Christmas Oratorio to the list. :D About half a dozen listenings are a minimum during Advent and Christmas for me, normally. :D

I totally swoon for "Messiah", too, of course, and I certainly listen to the first part of it numerous times in the Christmas season. :D

Apart from that, I like to listen to folk songs and hymns. And Corelli's Christmas Concert. :D
but being a cheerful hobbit he had not needed hope, as long as despair could be postponed.
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Post by Elentári »

I love the Corelli too! And the Bach - "Break forth, O beauteous, heavenly light" is especially gorgeous!

One of my favourite Christmas pieces to sing is "The Shepherds' Farewell" from L'Enfance du Christ by Berlioz. We usually sing this as our Midnight Mass anthem and with the candles and the incense and it being about 12:30 am it is a rather magical experience...:love:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p0vO4LDImrc

oh, and as it's Epiphany...how about Peter Cornelius' "The Three Kings"? that's been my favourite since I first sang it in my University choir back in the 80s.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a2dNKv48WJQ


Of course, my daughter's favourite Christmas music is The Nutcracker...she dreams of dancing Clara one day!!! :D
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Post by truehobbit »

Those are very pretty, Elentári! Thanks for the links. :)

I only know L'enfance by name, I've never heard it, and I didn't know there was anything that famous by Peter Cornelius. I know his name as a composer, but don't think I know any of his works (or didn't till now :D ).
but being a cheerful hobbit he had not needed hope, as long as despair could be postponed.
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