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Christmas Around the World

Have any of you ever done a "Christmas Around the World" concert?  That is the theme my community choir has chosen for their Christmas concert, and I was wondering if you could give me some ideas of music to include.  I would appreciate any help you can give me.
Christina Lamb
Artistic Director
Greenfield Community Choir
on June 25, 2014 12:37pm
If you have the funds to invest in a set of World Carols for Choirs (OUP), edited by Bob Chilcott & Susan Knight, it's a great resource
on June 26, 2014 3:52am
I directed a program at Mansfield University just last December with this very theme.  Here is the repertoire.  And, of course, there are many more choices!   A very rewarding project.  We just produced a DVD of the concert, in case you would like one.   Have fun, Christina!
Holiday Music from Around the World
Women’s Chorus
Prepare Thyself Zion….……………J. S. Bach                                     Germany
Ave Maria……………..Cesar Alejandro Carrillo                                    Venezuela
S’vivon……………Traditional Hebrew Song, arr. Betty Bertaux                Israel
Men’s Chorus
Sing We Now of Christmas………York/Johanson                            France
Lux aurumque.........…………….Eric Whitacre                                  USA
Dance of the Sugar-Plum Fairy…Tchaikovsky, arr. Funk                    Russia
Chamber Singers
Canite tuba…………….Palestrina                                                Italy
Ya viene la vieja…..Traditional Spanish, arr. Parker/Shaw            Spain
A Boy was Born……….Benjamin Britten                                    England
A Carol from an Irish Cabin………Dale Wood                                 USA
Noel Ayisyen………..Emile Desamours                                           Haiti
Festival Chorus
Pengyou, Ting!..........arr. Carolyn Jennings                              China
Mi y’maleil…………………Stanley Hoffman                                    Israel
Fum, Fum, Fum!..........arr. Mack Wilberg                                    Catalonia
Concert Choir
Gitanjali Chants……………….Craig Hella Johnson                        India
Ave Maria…………..Anton Bruckner                                          Austria
Huron Carol………….arr. Dale Warland                                    Canada
Hacia Belen va un borrico……arr. Shaw/Parker                           Spain
Combined Choirs
Betelehemu…………..arr, Wendell Whalum                                    Nigeria
Peggy Dettwiler
Mansfield University
Mansfield, PA
on June 26, 2014 5:07am
That's a pretty easy theme. Of course, pieces from France, Germany, Austria, England are pretty easy to find. I would recommend "Tu scendi dalle stelle" for Italian. There are nice versions online for free.
Various settings of Nigerian carol "Betelehemu" are out there, and there have been various arrangements of a Japanese carol.

Good luck!
on June 26, 2014 2:16pm
Natufurahi Siku Ya Leo (Kenya) arr. Boniface Mganga*
The Mummers' Song (Latvia)  Andrejs Jansons*
En El Portal a Belén (Puerto Rico) arr. Ed Henderson*
Maringa Krismes (Sierra Leone) arr. Kitty Fadlu-Deen*
Lullaby to the Christ Child (Brazil) arr. George L. Mabry
Venez, mes enfants (Alsace) arr. Donald Patriquin*
Nu zijt wellekome Jesu (Netherlands) arr. Roy Hopp*
The Carol of the Birds (Spain) arr. Parker/Shaw
The Hills are Bare at Bethlehem (US) arr. Ralph Johnson*
*= Earthsongs
Have fun!
on June 27, 2014 12:34am

Several sets of Australian Christmas Carols were written by John Wheeler (words) and William G James (music) back in the 1950's or thereabouts. At one stage they were published by Warner-Chappell – not sure of their current status. Here are links to two of them:

The Silver Stars are in the Sky

The Three Drovers

(There are links to some of the others in the YouTube sidebar.)

on June 27, 2014 12:46am
Visit Canasg Music for a variety of Christmas and New Year carol arrangements from England, Scotland, Wales, France, Germany and Ukraine, very suitable for community choirs.
Some particular recommendations:
Please to See the King (Pembrokeshire, Wales) - a New Year carol based on the tradition of hunting the wren
Taladh Chriosda - a Hebridean lullaby to the Christ Child (in Gaelic or English)
Guillaneus - a lively French New Year carol (in French)
Two Welsh Carols - in the harmonious 3-part male voice tradition
Best wishes
Sheena Phillips
on June 28, 2014 8:03am
I have two arrangements in "caribbean" style on (I'd feel guilty about the shameless self-promotion if they weren't FREE):
on June 28, 2014 11:31am
What are your singers suggesting?  Do they have some favourites?  Do they want more popular music or more of a classical style or a mix?  I would choose music based on the choir's abilities, likes and ofcourse your potential audience.  There are many suggestions from others here but I would check out You Tube and see if they suit your particular needs.  Have fun with the music no matter what.  As long as they love singing the pieces then your audiences will be thrilled.  
on June 30, 2014 3:07am
If you'd like to consider something from New Zealand (a summer Christmas) let me know and I'd be happy to suggest some tings. Also there is a piece of mine in the World Carols for Choirs which has been recommended to you.
David Hamilton
Auckland, New Zealand
on July 1, 2014 7:35am
My students loved "O Meu Menino" from Portugal published by Boosey.
on July 2, 2014 7:39am
We did one a few years back. I don't have the program handy, but we did a CD recording of most of it. Here's a link to the track listing (which is woefully undetailed in terms of where things are from, I'm afraid, but I can give you more info if you'd like once I actually find my copy).
on July 10, 2014 12:28pm
(If not mentioned previously) be SURE to see the Oxford collection(s) roughly entitlted, "World Carols" or "Carols from Around the World" or something similar.  Easy to find in their catalogue.
on July 11, 2014 3:35am
Dear Christina,
You might enjoy my setting of "Balulalow", which is in Scots - it was performed last year by three different choirs in Scotland.
It needs a soprano solo and a baritone solo, but both parts are easy enough to be done by amateur singers.
Chris Hutchings
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