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There are two themes in this carol. The first is the ‘lulla’ idea, a gently rocking motif between Db major and F minor, and the second a lyrical melody, first sung by sopranos, by choir, by men with ‘angelic’ sopranos and altos, and after a repeat of the opening 'lulla', a fuller rendition with descant, before giving way to a relaxed, repeated ‘lulla’. The louder section might seem too full-bodied for a lullaby, but is in keeping with other carols such as the Cradle Song by Isaac Watts: the gentle lullaby opens to a more ecstatic, thrilling rendition of the melody, in that the Virgin's slumber song also contains her joy at being Mother of God, surrounded by shepherds, magi, animals, angels, and the star overhead.
“The Suffolk Carols” are for the Suffolk Singers, whom I am honoured to call my friends. The Carols are the idea and fruit of the work of Alma Gower, Martin Corrall, Beverley Vankoningsveld, and others, for the annual Suffolk Singers Choral Workshop, held at Woodbridge School in November 2018, and sung in concert by the Suffolk Singers in Bury St Edmunds in December 2018, directed by Claire Weston.
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Reviews of The Suffolk Carols - 2 - The Virgin's Lullaby (Christmas) [SATB + Piano/Organ]
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