Advertise on ChoralNet 
ChoralNet logo
The mission of the ACDA is to inspire excellence in choral music through education, performance, composition, and advocacy.

Christmas by themes: International

Dear Subscribers to Choralists:

A few days ago I posted a request for suggestions for sacred Christmas
music from around the world because our director is planning a concert
for December of international Christmas choral selections.

I asked for music that was written in languages other than English, but,
if possible, also had an English translation. I did not exclude songs
from English-speaking countries other than the United States, however.
In addition, I asked for publisher, composer/arranger info.

My heartfelt thanks for the excellent and informative replies that I
received. What a wonderful resource there is in Choralists!

Also, I was asked to share my results with the List readers. (see below)
Information is reprinted with the permission of the sender (exceptions-
I did not include e mail addresses of several from whom I have not heard
back as yet. If you are interested in any of those, respond to me privately
and I will try to establish a contact for you).

Further suggestions would be welcome!

Most Sincerely,

Terry Koch
Director's Assistant,
Walla Walla Choral Society
mail to: tkoch(a)

I have several I'd like to recommend, most of which I've published:>"Carol
of the Birds" (Australia): This one is unpublished; words are the
original English with Australian idioms. Scored for two sopranos and piano,
but could be adapted to any two-part group. Up-tempo, 6/8.

"The World Was Waiting": SATB w/children's unison chorus (or a few
sopranos); published by Jackman Music, Orem, UT (email
or phone (801) 225-0859 for sample copy, or I can send you one directly
myself. Ballad style, mostly in English with Spanish flavor in some of the
lyrics and the music.

"Come Celebrate!": SATB w/children's unison chorus (or a few sopranos);
also published by Jackman. Upbeat, 6/8 with Spanish flavor and some Spanish

If you would consider black spirituals, "For He Was Born": SATB acappella,
upbeat and fun to sing; also by Jackman. and "I Wonder As I Gaze": SATB
w/soprano solo, piano; published by Jackman, ballad style.

I also have (what I consider) a very good arrangement of the American
(so-called "white") spiritual/folksong "I Wonder As I Wander", which is good
for Christmas: SATB w/children, piano; published by Jackman. A unique
treatment, in that it moves back and forth between major and minor keys.
Published by Jackman.

If any of these interest you, you can contact Jackman for a copy or I can
send you one (computer copy only, on "Birds", since it's not published yet).
Hope you can use some of them.

Cheers! Ann Kapp Andersen (Bad Aibling, Germany)

From: Ann Kapp Andersen
I recently published "An International Christmas - 23 Carols from Many
Countries" Susato Press MTC99. Cultures and countries represented in the
collection are: Puerto Rico, Germany, Wales, Scotland, Italy, Hungary,
Holland, France, England, Spain, Switzerland, Poland, Burgundy, Croatia,
Colombia, Ireland, and Huron Indians. Most are scored for SATB voices with
possible instrumental doublings. The arrangements are traditional and
reasonable for most choral ensembles. All are in original languages, and
those not in English have translations. If you want to check it out,
contact the publisher:

George Kelischek
199 Waldroup Road
Brasstown, NC 28902
(828)837-5833 voice
(828)837-8755 fax
e-mail: susato(a)

Gerald Moore
Department of Music
Lipscomb University
Nashville, TN
I don't know if you would be interested in Christmas music from South
Africa, if you are, just let me know!!

Brian Sutton

Musica Russica publishes 11 Christmas Carols from Russia and Ukraine; text
is in phonetics and in the original Ukrainian. Among them is the
original-language version of "Carol of the bells" by M. Leontovich. 5 of the
carols are also available in arrangments for SSA and TTB.

More Slavic carols (including some with English translation) are forthcoming
in Musica Russica's NEW ISSUES, coming this spring. For more information and
on-line ordering, visit Musica Russica's web site:

Vlad Morosan
My first thought was "Il est né", which of course comes in many editions.
But I know I have some stuff on Scandinavian pieces, also.

Mary E.S. Buch

Vocal Music, Heskett Middle School, Bedford, OH
Senior Choir Director, Burton Congregational Church
Two suggestions, one selfish!

First, the selfish one:
"Irish Carol," my arrangement (Nina Gilbert), published by Oxford
University Press. You can ask OUP for a free perusal copy. A traditional
carol, English words; each voice gets the melody at some point, accompanied
by easy figures in the other voices. SATB, with a six-part canon on the
exact melody in one verse.

Noel Ayisyen, by Emile Desamours, published by Mark Foster. Sweet
calypso-type thing, words in Haitian Creole (which looks like misspelled
French sometimes -- "king of kings" translates to "wa de wa," for example).

Both of the above are in the category I would call "easy, yet respectable"
and "unfamiliar, yet warm/fuzzy and non-threatening."

Hope you'll post a compilation of people's suggestions, and I hope your
compilation will include the names of whose suggestions they are.

Best wishes,

Nina Gilbert
Nina Gilbert
Music Department, University of California-Irvine
ngilbert(a); NLGilbert(a)
voice mail: 949-824-3854; department fax: 949-824-4914
updated 1/00
photos of 11/23 concert at

Have you seen the winter solstice pieces in the Revels Choral Series (Thorpe
Music, dist. Presser)? Aro Que Nostre (Provencal), Poslan Jest Od Boha Andel
God Rest You Merry (England), etc.


Hello from Iceland.

If your director would like some music from Iceland, just let me know. I
don't know if/where you can find icelandic music in USA, but I'd be
happy to assist here if I can.

Just get back in touch.

Gróa Hreinsdóttir,

I like very much the Janssons Latvian Carols, published by Earthsongs in
Oregon. There are two sets, each with three. My favorites of the six are
Kas tada gaisma, Christmas Rose, and Roasting a Duck (Christmas Day? Not
sure of the title). These won't mean anything until you have the scores, of

Earthsongs also publishes two charming, easy Austrian pieces: Da Droben
vom Hirte (I might not have that right) and Maria Walks Amid the thorns.

All of these come in both original language and English, if I recall
correctly, which I rarely do these days.

It might be nice to do the original setting of Stille Nacht/Silent Night.
Carus publishes one with the orignal notes and guitar, I think.

Conrad Susa's Carols and Lullabies (ECSchirmer) is all Spanish carols, with
marimba, guitar and harp. Oxrford has a set of Spanish Carols arr. by
Greegory Rose. And William Grant Still wrtoe a piece called Christmas in
the Western World, which has some charmning carols from Central and South
America, and Canada, available thorugh Peer/Southern.

Good luck!

David Griggs-Janower
228 Placid Drive
Schenectady, NY 12303-5118
518/356-9155 (h); 442-4167 (w)

Albany Pro Musica
PO Box 3850
Albany, NY 12203-0850
Ph/Fax: (518) 273-6510

You didn't mention the level of the group, but try "Riu, Riu, Chiu"
(Spanish). I believe the publisher is Lorenz. (unsure of the arranger)
Text in English and Spanish, arranged for SAB, SATB, etc.
Good luck.

Lynda A. Maccini Pavloff
Choral Director, Walpole High School
275 Common Street
Walpole, MA 02081
phone: (508) 660-7257
fax: (508) 850-7958
The End

Terry Koch
mail to: tkoch(a)

on August 29, 2002 10:00pm
I'm trying to put together a Christmas concert honoring our recently deceased daughter whose favorite saying was "Love is the Only Answer". Seems to me that this fits Christmas better than anything else.
I would like to find joyous and touching songs - and it will be performed in a chapel, so it must be respectful of that. Mostly SATB, but can also consider TTBB or SSAA. Am already planning a soprano solo from the Messiah, "Rejoice Greatly". Any thoughts? If you have anyt suggestions, please include where and how to order the music. Thanks.