Music: Sun Dec 23

Christmas music from a variety of traditions and a range of perspectives is featured this Sunday morning at CUUC. The French composer Olivier Messiaen composed his Vingt regards sur l’enfant-Jésus for solo piano in 1944. These “Twenty Views of the Child Jesus” are highly evocative, sonorously enchanting meditations on the Christ child. “Regard de l'étoile" or the View of the Star, is the second work in the cycle. Full of bell chiming and distant twinkling, the piece also presents the “Theme of the Star and of the Cross,” a musical idea developed throughout the suite. The following program is suggested in the subtitles in the printed score: the shock of grace….the star shines naively, topped by a cross….

Other works performed include selections from Franz Liszt’s “The Christmas Tree,” a set of piano pieces written for the composer’s granddaughter, an arrangement of a popular Catalonian Christmas carol, and more settings of celebrated holiday tunes by Donald Waxman, a renowned author of teaching materials for young piano students. Read on for programming details.

Centering Music: Adam Kent, piano
Regard de l’étoile from Vingt regards sur l’enfant-Jésus
                                         Olivier Messiaen

From “The Christmas Tree”
            “The Shepherds at the Manger” (In dulci jubilo)
            Scherzoso: Lighting Up the Tree”
            “Old Provençal Christmas Song”
                                    Franz Liszt

Opening Music:
El cant dels ocells (The Song of the Birds)               
                                    Traditional Catalan Christmas Carol, arr. by Joaquin Nin-Culmell

From A Christmas Pageant
“Bring a Torch, Jeannette, Isabelle”
“Good King Wenceslas”
“We Three Kings”
“Ding Dong Merrily On High”
“Yule’s Come and Yule’s Gone”
           Donald Waxman

From “The Christmas Tree”
                        Adeste Fideles

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