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“Christmas Through the Ages” Allison Jones’ Junior Recital Collaborative pianist, Andrew Schneider From the studio of Professor Cynthia Clayton

online December 1st, 2020 7:00 pm

“Rejoice greatly” from The Messiah (G. F. Handel) George Frederic Handel, one of the finest composers of the Baroque era, was born in 1685 in Halle, Germany. Although his father initially opposed Handel’s interest in studying music, he eventually allowed him to begin organ and composition lessons. In his early 20s, Handel traveled to Italy and England to play for eager patrons. He eventually moved to England, two years after his appointment as Kapellmeister to the Elector of Hanover, part of the Holy Roman Empire in Germany. There, he went on to compose many secular and religious works, many of which are widely performed today. One of the most famous was the Messiah, an oratorio that Handel composed in less than a month. “Rejoice greatly” is from part I of the Messiah, which is usually performed at Christmastime.

Lyrics: Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion, shout, O daughter of Jerusalem, behold, thy King cometh unto thee. He is the righteous Saviour, and He shall speak peace unto the heathen.

Exsultate, jubilate, K. 165 (W. A. Mozart) Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, one of the most popular composers of the Classical era was born in 1756 in Salzburg, Austria. He was a child prodigy and also, fortunate to be born into a musical family. His father, Leopold Mozart, was a hardworking and immensely talented musician who recognized his son’s potential and began his music education at the tender age of three years. Throughout his tragically short life, Mozart wrote, taught and published many sonatas, concertos, symphonies, and operas. Many are widely performed and enjoyed today. The motet, Exsultate, jubilate, K. 165, one of Mozart’s famous sacred works, was originally written for the famous castrato, Venanzio Rauzzini. Today, this classical work remains a timeless piece in the soprano repertoire. __________________________________________________________________ Lyrics: Movement 1: Exsultate, jubilate, O vos animae beatae exsultate, jubilate,

Rejoice, be glad, O you blessed souls, Rejoice, be glad,

dulcia cantica canendo; cantui vestro respondendo psallant aethera cum me.

Singing sweet songs; In response to your singing Let the heavens sing forth with me.

Movement 2: Fulget amica dies, jam fugere et nubila et procellae; exortus est justis inexspectata quies. Undique obscura regnabat nox, surgite tandem laeti qui timuistis adhuc, et jucundi aurorae fortunatae. frondes dextera plena et lilia date. Tu virginum corona, tu nobis pacem dona, tu consolare affectus, unde suspirat cor.

The friendly day shines forth, both clouds and storms have fled now; for the righteous there has arisen an unexpected calm. Dark night reigned everywhere [before]; you who feared till now, and joyful for this lucky dawn give garlands and lilies with full right hand. You, o crown of virgins, grant us peace, console our feelings, from which our hearts sigh.

Movement 3: Alleluja.


“Le noël des Oiseaux” (Cécile Chaminade) Cécile Chaminade was born in 1857 in Paris, France. A prolific Romantic composer of over 400 works, she composed in many musical mediums. As a child, her musical aptitude was recognized, but the family was reluctant for her to pursue formal music studies (because she was female.) Fortunately, her family lived near

Georges Bizet who was so impressed by the piano prodigy that he called her “My little Mozart” and encouraged further education for the young musician. Although her father did not allow her to enter the Conservatoire de Paris, she began private piano, violin and composition lessons with notable Parisian teachers. She began her career as a concert pianist, adding in her own compositions over time. Another Romantic composer, Ambroise Thomas, admired her talent, remarking “this is not a woman who composes, but a composer who is a woman.” “Le noël des Oiseaux” is a sweet Christmas mélodie, which prays for the birds to have a joyful Christmas, even during the cold winter.

Lyrics: Petit Jésus, maître du ciel, Que les anges chantant Noël Veillent sous leurs blancheurs ailées, Viens donc, viens donc pour les petits oiseaux, Qui frissonnent au bord des eaux gelées

Little Jesus, master of heaven, May the angels that sing of Christmas Watch under their winged whiteness, Come then, come then for the little birds Shivering at the edge of frozen waters

Bonnes gens qui sur le chemin passez, un rosaire à la main, Dont l'âme a des avés pour ailes, Priez, priez pour les petits oiseaux Dont la neige a trempé les os si frèles.

Good people on the way pass by, a rosary in hand, Whose souls have wings for flight, Pray, pray for the little birds Whose soft bones have been drenched in snow.

Cloches sonores au doux bruit, Qui pour la messe de minuit Au fond de l'air tintez agiles, Sonnez, sonnez pour les petits oiseaux Les nids sont frères des berceaux fragiles.

Bells ring with a gentle sound, who for the midnight mass rings nimbly low in the air, Ring, ring for the little birds Nests are brothers to fragile cradles.

Beaux anges, nos frères ailés, Qui près de la crèche volez, Vous que Dieu sur la terre envoie, Apportez, apportez aux petits

Fair angels, our winged brothers, Who fly near the nursery, You whom God on earth sends, Bring, bring to the little birds

oiseaux grelottant parmi les roseaux la joie.

shivering among the reeds, Joy.

“The Holy City� (Michael Maybrick) Michael Maybrick was born in Liverpool, England in 1841. He was a very successful Romantic era vocalist and composer. He started out as a choir singer, but as his voice matured, he developed into an impressive baritone. His family supported his talent by sending him to conservatories in Leipzig and Milan to continue his music education. Maybrick worked as a singer and later as a composer, publishing under a pseudonym: Stephen Adams. He collaborated with a well-known English lyricist, Frederick Weatherly, producing several popular Victorian songs, including the beloved "The Holy City," which was published in 1892.

Lyrics: Last night I lay asleeping There came a dream so fair I stood in old Jerusalem Beside the temple there I heard the children singing And ever as they sang Methought the voice of Angels From Heaven in answer rang "Jerusalem, Jerusalem! Lift up your gates and sing, Hosanna in the highest. Hosanna to your King!" And then methought my dream was chang'd The streets no longer rang

Hushed were the glad Hosannas The little children sang The sun grew dark with mystery The morn was cold and chill As the shadow of a cross arose Upon a lonely hill "Jerusalem, Jerusalem! Hark! How the Angels sing, Hosanna in the highest, Hosanna to your King!" And once again the scene was changed New earth there seemed to be I saw the Holy City Beside the tideless sea The light of God was on its streets The gates were open wide And all who would might enter And no one was denied No need of moon or stars by night Or sun to shine by day It was the new Jerusalem That would not pass away "Jerusalem! Jerusalem Sing for the night is o'er Hosanna in the highest Hosanna for evermore!"

Ave Maria from Joyeux Noël (Philippe Rombi) Philippe Rombi was born in Pau, France in 1968. He is an internationally famous French film composer, and is best known for the movie score of Joyeux Noël, written about the historical WWI Christmas armistice. He began his music education at the Conservatoire National de Région of Marseille, studying piano

with Pierre Barbizet and conducting with Pol Mule. He was a top performer there and won awards in piano and in chamber music. Rombi went on to study soundtrack writing at the Ecole Supérieure de Musique of Paris. His composition, “Ave Maria”, was sung by Natalie Dessay in Joyeux Noël which was nominated for Césars, the national film award of France in 2006. ______________________________________________________________________________


Ave Maria, gratia plena, Dominus tecum. Benedicta tu in mulieribus, et benedictus fructus ventris tui, Jesus. Sancta Maria, ora pro nobis peccatoribus, nunc et in hora mortis nostrae. Amen.

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, pray for us sinners, now and in the hour of our death. Amen.

Thank you so much for listening to my recital, and I hope you have enjoyed the music I shared with you! First, I would like to thank Professor Cynthia Clayton, Professor Brian Suits, Dr. Andreea Muţ, and Andrew Schneider for helping me get prepared for this recital during such a crazy semester. I am also very grateful to my family, and my dear friend and mentor, Dr. Isabelle Ganz, who have always supported me. Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas!

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