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Silent Night, Holy Night
All is calm, all is bright...
We sing this lovely Austrian carol every year at Midnight Mass. It perfectly sets the tone of the service - the stillness of the dark night, the sense of expectation, the wonder and the mystery of the birth of Christ two thousand years ago.
Our setting this year is Haydn's exuberant "St Nicolas" Mass, which requires the basses of the choir to cover a range of almost 2 and a half octaves in the opening 10 bars and continues in suitably virtuosic style. During the communion we shall be singing some of the choir's favourite Christmas pieces, including John Taverner's exquisite setting of William Blake's "The Lamb" and Bob Chilcott's "The heart in waiting," which sets a contemporary poem by Kevin Crossley-Holland. Following communion it has become traditional to sing a meditative piece before the jubilation of the closing hymn, and this year we will be singing Tallis's "Videte miraculum," a 6-voice piece which is one of my own personal favourites from the entire repertoire of sacred choral music.
Come and join us for this special occasion and bring your family and friends to sing those well-loved carols, to listen to the choir, and to join in worship of God who has shared our human life in the person of Jesus.
Christmas Eve, 24th December at 11:30pm.