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Essential Christmas - 30 Seasonal Favourites


Release Date: 10/15/2002 
Label:  Decca   Catalog #: 473345   Spars Code: ADD 
Composer:  Lowell MasonTraditionalLeroy AndersonFranz Xaver Gruber,   ... 
Performer:  Dame Joan SutherlandStephen CleoburyLuciano PavarottiDame Kiri Te Kanawa,   ... 
Conductor:  Richard BonyngeStephen CleoburyFrederick FennellSir David Willcocks,   ... 
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ambrosian SingersNew Philharmonia OrchestraCambridge King's College Choir,   ... 
Number of Discs: 2 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 2 Hours 1 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

This double-set of Holiday cheer from the Decca catalog includes classic vocal, choral and instrumental works. This double-set of Holiday cheer from the Decca catalog includes classic vocal, choral and instrumental works. Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Joy to the World by Lowell Mason
Performer:  Dame Joan Sutherland (Soprano)
Conductor:  Richard Bonynge
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ambrosian Singers,  New Philharmonia Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 19th Century; USA 
Length: 1 Minutes 53 Secs. 
Language: English 
Notes: Arranged: Gamley 
2.
Ding Dong! Merrily on high by Traditional
Conductor:  Stephen Cleobury
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge King's College Choir
Period: Renaissance 
Written: 16th Century; France 
Length: 2 Minutes 0 Secs. 
Notes: Arranger: Charles Wood.
This selection is based on the tune "Branle l'officiel" from Thoinot
Arbeau's "Orchésographie". 
3.
Sleigh Ride by Leroy Anderson
Conductor:  Frederick Fennell
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Eastman-Rochester Pops
Length: 2 Minutes 48 Secs. 
4.
Silent Night by Franz Xaver Gruber
Conductor:  Sir David Willcocks
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bach Choir
Period: Classical 
Written: 1818; Austria 
Length: 2 Minutes 38 Secs. 
Language: English 
Notes: Arranged: Cashmore
This selection is a DDD recording. 
5.
While shepherds watched their flocks by night by Traditional
Performer:  Stephen Cleobury (Organ)
Conductor:  George Guest
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge St. John's College Choir
Period: Renaissance 
Written: by 1592; England 
Length: 2 Minutes 46 Secs. 
Language: English 
Notes: David Willcocks wrote the descant and organ part used in this performance. 
6.
The Twelve Days of Christmas by Traditional
Performer:  Dame Joan Sutherland (Soprano)
Conductor:  Richard Bonynge
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ambrosian Singers,  New Philharmonia Orchestra
Written: England 
Length: 3 Minutes 9 Secs. 
Language: English 
Notes: Arranged: Gamley 
7.
Messiah, HWV 56: For unto us a child is born by George Frideric Handel
Conductor:  Sir Georg Solti
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chicago Symphony Orchestra,  Chicago Symphony Chorus
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1742; London, England 
Length: 4 Minutes 20 Secs. 
Language: English 
Notes: This selection is a DDD recording. 
8.
Messiah, HWV 56: Pastoral Symphony "Pifa" by George Frideric Handel
Conductor:  Christopher Hogwood
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of Ancient Music
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1742; London, England 
Length: 2 Minutes 47 Secs. 
9.
Ellens Gesang III, D 839/Op. 52 no 6 "Ave Maria" by Franz Schubert
Performer:  Luciano Pavarotti (Tenor)
Conductor:  Kurt Herbert Adler
Orchestra/Ensemble:  National Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1825; Vienna, Austria 
Length: 4 Minutes 48 Secs. 
Language: Latin 
10.
Lieutenant Kijé Suite, Op. 60: Troika by Sergei Prokofiev
Conductor:  Charles Dutoit
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1934; Paris, France 
Length: 2 Minutes 47 Secs. 
Notes: This selection is a DDD recording. 
11.
Winter Wonderland by Felix Bernard
Performer:  Dame Kiri Te Kanawa (Soprano)
Conductor:  Carl Davis,  Terry Edwards
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  London Voices
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1934; USA 
Length: 3 Minutes 49 Secs. 
Language: English 
Notes: This selection is a DDD recording.
Arranged: Cullen 
12.
Panis angelicus by Traditional
Performer:  Dame Kiri Te Kanawa (Soprano)
Conductor:  Barry Rose
Orchestra/Ensemble:  English Chamber Orchestra,  St. Paul's Cathedral Choir
Length: 3 Minutes 38 Secs. 
Language: Latin 
Notes: This selection is a DDD recording.
Arranged: Boustead 
13.
Christmas Oratorio, BWV 248: no 10, Sinfonia in G major by Johann Sebastian Bach
Conductor:  Sir Neville Marriner
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1734-1735; Leipzig, Germany 
Notes: This selection is a DDD recording. 
14.
Messiah, HWV 56: Hallelujah! by George Frideric Handel
Conductor:  Sir Georg Solti
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chicago Symphony Orchestra,  Chicago Symphony Chorus
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1742; London, England 
Length: 3 Minutes 40 Secs. 
Language: English 
15.
Away in a manger by William James Kirkpatrick
Performer:  Stephen Cleobury (Organ), Mark Tinkler (Treble)
Conductor:  George Guest
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge St. John's College Choir
Length: 2 Minutes 28 Secs. 
Language: English 
Notes: Arranged: David Willcocks 
16.
In the bleak mid-winter by Harold Edwin Darke
Performer:  Rosemary Joshua (Soprano), Ian Bostridge (Tenor)
Conductor:  Sir Neville Marriner
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields,  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields Chorus
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1911; England 
Length: 4 Minutes 28 Secs. 
Language: English 
Notes: This selection is a DDD recording. 
17.
English Hymnal: O little town of Bethlehem by Ralph Vaughan Williams
Conductor:  Sir David Willcocks
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge King's College Choir
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1906; England 
Length: 3 Minutes 3 Secs. 
Language: English 
18.
The first nowell by Traditional
Conductor:  Sir David Willcocks
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge King's College Choir
Written: England 
Length: 4 Minutes 48 Secs. 
Language: English 
Notes: Arranged: David Willcocks 
19.
German Dances (3), K 605: no 3 in C major "Sleigh ride" by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Conductor:  Willi Boskovsky
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Mozart Ensemble
Period: Classical 
Written: 1789; Vienna, Austria 
Length: 2 Minutes 51 Secs. 
20.
Deck the Halls by Traditional
Performer:  Dame Joan Sutherland (Soprano)
Conductor:  Richard Bonynge
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ambrosian Singers,  New Philharmonia Orchestra
Written: Wales, UK 
Length: 1 Minutes 16 Secs. 
Language: English 
Notes: Arranged: Gamley 
21.
Meet Me in St. Louis: Have yourself a merry little Christmas by Hugh Martin
Performer:  Dame Kiri Te Kanawa (Soprano)
Conductor:  Carl Davis
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1944; USA 
Length: 3 Minutes 45 Secs. 
Language: English 
Notes: This selection is a DDD recording.
Arranged: Cullen 
22.
Concerti grossi (12), Op. 6: no 8 in G minor "Christmas" - 7th movement, Largo "Pastorale" by Arcangelo Corelli
Conductor:  Sir Neville Marriner
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields
Period: Baroque 
Written: Rome, Italy 
Length: 2 Minutes 28 Secs. 
Notes: Composition written: Rome, Italy (1708 - 1712). 
23.
Minuit, Chrétiens "O holy night" by Adolphe Adam
Performer:  Leontyne Price (Soprano)
Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra members
Period: Romantic 
Written: France 
Length: 4 Minutes 26 Secs. 
Language: English 
Notes: Arranged: Totzauer 
24.
In dulci jubilo by Traditional
Performer:  Simon Preston (Organ)
Conductor:  Sir David Willcocks
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge King's College Choir
Period: Medieval 
Written: 12th Century; Germany 
Length: 3 Minutes 34 Secs. 
Language: Latin 
Notes: Arranged: Pearsall 
25.
Christmas Oratorio, BWV 248: no 19, Schlafe, mein Liebster by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer:  Marilyn Horne (Mezzo Soprano)
Conductor:  Henry Lewis
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Cantata Orchestra
Period: Baroque 
Written: Leipzig, Germany 
Length: 4 Minutes 13 Secs. 
Language: German 
26.
Nutcracker, Op. 71: no 9, Act 1 - Waltz of the Snowflakes by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Richard Bonynge
Orchestra/Ensemble:  National Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1891-1892; Russia 
Length: 6 Minutes 17 Secs. 
27.
Ave Maria by Charles Gounod
Performer:  Leontyne Price (Soprano)
Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1859; France 
Length: 2 Minutes 38 Secs. 
Language: Latin 
Notes: Arranged: Sabatini
This work is based on J.S. Bach's Prelude no 1 in C from 'The Well-Tempered Clavier.' 
28.
L'enfance du Christ, Op. 25: L'adieu des bergers by Hector Berlioz
Conductor:  Sir Colin Davis
Orchestra/Ensemble:  St. Anthony Singers,  Goldsborough Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1850-1854; France 
Length: 4 Minutes 58 Secs. 
Language: French 
29.
Songs (5), Op. 49: no 4, Wiegenlied by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Renata Tebaldi (Soprano)
Conductor:  Anton Guadagno
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New Philharmonia Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1868; Austria 
Length: 2 Minutes 11 Secs. 
Language: German 
Notes: Arranged: Gamley 
30.
Crown of Roses by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  John Rutter
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Clare College Choir
Period: Romantic 
Written: Russia 
Length: 2 Minutes 19 Secs. 
Language: English 
31.
Nutcracker, Op. 71: no 1b, Act 1 - Decorating the Christmas Tree by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Richard Bonynge
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1891-1892; Russia 
Length: 4 Minutes 10 Secs. 
32.
See amid the winter's snow by Traditional
Performer:  Simon Preston (Organ)
Conductor:  Sir David Willcocks
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cambridge King's College Choir
Length: 3 Minutes 50 Secs. 
Language: English 
Notes: Arranged: David Willcocks 
33.
Festgesang "Hark! The herald angels sing" by Felix Mendelssohn
Performer:  Anthony Way (Treble)
Conductor:  John Scott
Orchestra/Ensemble:  English Chamber Orchestra,  St. Paul's Cathedral Choir
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1840; Germany 
Length: 4 Minutes 15 Secs. 
Language: English 
Notes: Arranged: David Willcocks
This selection is a DDD recording. 
34.
Holiday Inn: White Christmas by Irving Berlin
Performer:  Dame Kiri Te Kanawa (Soprano)
Conductor:  Carl Davis
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  London Voices
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1942; USA 
Length: 3 Minutes 50 Secs. 
Language: English 
Notes: This selection is a DDD recording.
Arranged: Cullen 
35.
Do You Hear What I Hear? by Gloria Shayne Baker
Performer:  Anthony Way (Treble)
Conductor:  John Scott
Orchestra/Ensemble:  English Chamber Orchestra,  St. Paul's Cathedral Choir
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1962 
Length: 4 Minutes 0 Secs. 
Language: English 
Notes: This selection is a DDD recording.
Arranged: Alexander 

Sound Samples

Joy To The World
Ding Dong! Merrily On High
Sleigh Ride
Stille Nacht, heilige Nacht
While Shepherds Watched (Este Psalter, 1592)
The Twelve Days Of Christmas
Messiah / Part 1: 12. Chorus: "For unto us a Child is born"
Messiah, HWV 56 / Pt. 1: Pifa (Pastoral Symphony)
Ave Maria, "Ellens Gesang III", D839
Messiah / Part 2: 42. Chorus: "Hallelujah"
Lieutenant Kijé, Symphonic Suite, Op.60: 4. Troïka
Winter Wonderland
Panis Angelicus
Christmas Oratorio, BWV 248 / Part Two - For the second Day of Christmas: No.10 Sinfonia
Away in a manger
In the Bleak Midwinter
O Little Town Of Bethlehem
The First Nowell
Three German Dances, K.605: No.3 in C, Trio "Die Schlittenfahrt"
Deck The Hall With Boughs Of Holly
Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas
Concerto grosso in G minor, Op.6, No.8 "fatto per la notte di Natale": 5. Pastorale (Largo)
O Holy Night (Minuit chrétien)
In Dulci Jubilo
Christmas Oratorio, BWV 248 / Part Two - For the second Day of Christmas: Schlafe mein liebster (excerpt)
Do You Hear What I Hear?
The Nutcracker, Op.71 / Act 1: No. 9 Scene and Waltz of the Snowflakes
Ave Maria: arr. from Bach's Prelude No.1 BWV 846
L'Enfance du Christ, Op.25 / Partie 2: La fuite en Egypte: Il s'en va loin de la terre
Wiegenlied, Op.49, No.4
Legenda (Legend;The Crown of Roses) Op.54, No.5]
The Nutcracker, Op.71 / Act 1: No. 1 The Christmas Tree
See Amid The Winter's Snow
Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
White Christmas

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