O Holy Night: A Merton Christmas

O Holy Night: A Merton Christmas

by Choir of Merton College, OxfordChoir of Merton College


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The venerable English chapel choir recording has gone in new directions in recent years, with the inclusion of contemporary repertory, American and Continental pieces, and more. That doesn't mean there isn't still room for a traditionalist outing, and that's what you get here from the Merton College Choir, Oxford, and Oxford Philharmonic Orchestra under Benjamin Nicholas. There are carols in familiar arrangements by David Willcocks, imposingly introduced by brass; there are a few lush French pieces; there are contemporary compositions of a thoroughly tonal cast. Several are by John Rutter, one from very early in his career. The program is intelligently shaped, with the Willcocks arrangements standing as central pillars rather than as announcements of pomp, and the slightly chromatic close harmonies of American compsoer Morton Lauridsen ends things, in this context, on a somewhat mysterious note. The biggest stars are the mixed-gender choir itself, with a rich sound that fits the repertory extremely well, and above all Delphian's engineers, who balance choir, orchestra, and organ with glittering clarity. A fine holiday gift or simply a listening session for the traditionally minded.

Product Details

Release Date: 10/20/2017
Label: Delphian
UPC: 0801918341922
catalogNumber: 34192
Rank: 123856


  1. O Magnum Mysterium, for voice & piano
  2. O Come, All Ye Faithful (Adeste fideles)
  3. What child is this?, for soprano, chorus & organ
  4. In dulci jubilo, for soloists & chorus
  5. Away in a manger (Tune: Cradle Song) (New English Hymnal 22)
  6. The Bird of Dawning, song for soprano, chorus & orchestra
  7. Noel (or It came upon the midnight clear), hymn for chorus
  8. Cantique de Noël, for voice & orchestra ("Minuit, Chrétiens," "O Holy Night")
  9. Stille Nacht, heilige Nacht (Silent Night)
  10. I Sing of a Maiden for 2 voices & piano
  11. The Shepherd's Carol, for chorus
  12. In the Bleak Midwinter
  13. Unto Us Is Born A Son (Puer nobis nascitur; Piae Cantiones, 1582)
  14. L' Enfance du Christ, oratorio for soprano, 2 tenors, baritone, 3 basses, chorus & orchetsra ("trilogie sacrée") H. 130 (Op. 25): The Shepherds' Farewell
  15. Hark! the Herald Angels Sing (adapted by W. H. Cummings from Mendelssohn's Festgesang for the Gutenberg Festival)
  16. Jesus Christ the Apple Tree (The Apple Tree Carol)
  17. Shepherd's Pipe Carol
  18. All Bells in Paradise, carol for chorus & organ

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