Edward Lambert. Brighter than the Sun
Heinrich Schütz. The Christmas Story
Fleur de Bray (soprano)
Daniel Joy (tenor)
Samuel Lom (bass)
Newbury Chamber Choir & Players
Music arranged and conducted by Edward Lambert
Heinrich Schütz is widely considered the greatest German composer before Bach: there is no more appealing work of his than the famous Christmas Story, a work written in old age but in the new, exuberant Italian style. It tells the story of Christ's birth, of the Adoration by the Shepherds and the Wise Men, Herod and the Slaughter of the Innocents, and the Flight to Egypt. This version has been arranged for a small band of players and adapted to the familiar English text of the King James Bible, so making this beautiful work accessible for all.
Brighter than the Sun - a sonorous blend of old and new - is a cantata on the theme of Advent. From the English Mystery Plays, there's the scene between the Angel and an incredulous Mary; she visits her cousin Elizabeth, sings the Magnificat and confronts a jealous Joseph. There are famous medieval carols and a Hymn to the Virgin.
With music that is full of colour and joy, and featuring three superb soloists and a band of professional players, this is a winter's afternoon concert for all ages, a timeless celebration of the Christmas message.
Tickets: £15 on the door, £13:50 in advance at newburychamberchoir.org
Sunday 1 December at 5 pm
St John's Church, Newbury, RG14 7PY