Christmas Prelude: Noel X or Noel XI?
  • Yes, I'm already thinking about Christmas. I've been playing Daquin's noels for Christmas preludes for a few years now. Last year was Noel en Musette, which worked especially well, as the pedal point helps build excitement and convey a sense of anticipatory joy. This year I'm debating between Noel XI and Noel X. I'm tending toward Noel XI since X could be a bit too bombastic as a prelude in a small church. I'm conflicted though, as XI to the modern American ear might sound "sad." Which should I go with? I play on a decent toaster in a smallish country church, in case that is relevant. Other Christmas organ prelude suggestions are welcome, shooting for 5-10 minutes.
  • Bach - In dulci jubilo (three of them, one is quiet and would make a nice prelude at midnight mass, another is a canon with treacherous rhythm, the other is exciting and would make a good postlude)
    Lebegue - noels
    Bach - Partita on Vom Himmel hoch
    Walcha - Several Christmas chorales
    Dupres - Variations on a noel
    Pachelbel - Wie schon leuchtet der Morgenstern (though this is more Epiphany than Christmas)
    Brahms - Es ist ein Ros' entsprungen
    As for d'Aquin - I wouldn't rule out no. X just on the basis of its being 'bombastic'. (Perhaps 'celebratory' would be a better word.)
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 10,659
    My congregation is fond of Balbastre, Claude - Noel: Joseph est bien marie.
  • I played the Balbastre Joseph est a few years ago, what a fun piece that is to play!
  • MarkS
    Posts: 252
    It is a shame that modern ears equate minor mode (or minor-sounding modal) music with sad/dark!

    To add to Mr. Osborn's list, and I'm surprised he didn't include them:

    Buxtehude - In dulci jubilo
    Pachelbel - Von Himmel hoch

    Lesser known, but worthwhile:
    Barber - Chorale Prelude on Silent Night
    Hampton - Silent night
    Thanked by 1CHGiffen
  • Thanks guys! I think I've decided on Lebegue's Noel IX. I appreciate the input.
  • StimsonInRehabStimsonInRehab
    Posts: 1,659
    . . . but, these goes to XI.
  • CGM
    Posts: 497
    . . . but, these goes to XI.

    ha ha ha ha ha ha