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Carols for Choirs, 1: Fifty Christmas Carols: Bk. 1 Paperback – 24 Aug 1961

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Frequently Bought Together

  • Carols for Choirs, 1: Fifty Christmas Carols: Bk. 1
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  • Carols for Choirs 2: Fifty Carols for Christmas and Advent (Vocal score): Vocal Score Bk.2
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  • Carols for Choirs 3: Vocal score: Vocal Score Bk. 3 (. . . for Choirs Collections)
Total price: £44.25
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Product details

  • Paperback: 184 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press; 1st edition (24 Aug. 1961)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0193532220
  • ISBN-13: 978-0193532229
  • Product Dimensions: 25.1 x 1 x 17.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (71 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 16,558 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

About the Author

Reginald Jacques was born in 1894 in Ashby-de-la-Zouch, Leicestershire and studied at Queen's College, Oxford, where he later became organist and director of music in 1926. Reginald Jacques was also conductor of the Oxford Orchestra Society from 1930 to 1936. From 1931 to 1960 he was conductor of The Bach Choir in London. In 1936 he founded his own Jacques Orchestra, which he conducted until 1960. In 1954 he was made Commander of the Order of the British Empire. He died in 1969. John Rutter was born in London in 1945 and studied music at Clare College, Cambridge. His compositions embrace choral, orchestral, and instrumental music, and he has edited or co-edited various choral anthologies, including four Carols for Choirs volumes with Sir David Willcocks and the Oxford Choral Classics series. From 1975 to 1979 he was Director of Music at Clare College, and in 1981 he formed his own choir, the Cambridge Singers. He now divides his time between composition and conducting and is sought after as a guest conductor for the world's leading choirs and orchestras. Born in 1919, David Willcocks began his musical career as a chorister at Westminster Abbey, later winning scholarships to Clifton College and King's College, Cambridge. Following war service, he was elected Fellow of King's College, and later became Organist of Salisbury and Worcester Cathedrals, conducting the Three Choirs Festival whilst at Worcester. Willcocks returned to King's College, Cambridge as Director of Music from 1957-1974, with the first collection of his arrangements in the Carols for Choirs series publishing in 1961. He was Director of Music at the Royal College of Music from 1974-1984, and was knighted in the Queen's Silver Jubilee Honours List in 1977. Willcocks also conducted The Bach Choir for 38 years, retiring in 1998. Sir David maintains a busy schedule of concerts and recordings, including recent visits to the USA, Canada and Europe.

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 13 Nov. 2001
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've been singing from this book with various choirs since the age of 11. It's got most of the favourites and often has interesting harmonies for the parts other than soprano.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Kenneth F. Mcara VINE VOICE on 12 Sept. 2008
Format: Paperback
It's difficult to believe that this little collection of 50 Christmas carols has been around for nearly 50 years. It contains versions of most carols that choirs are likely to want to sing, in a compact and light volume that is clearly printed and easy to navigate.

Those who want an even more comprehensive - and weighty - collection should investigate "100 Carols for Choirs" which features the most popular pieces from all 4 volumes in this series, but there is still plenty to enjoy here, in an edition which pre-dates John Rutter's involvement (either a good or a bad thing, depending upon your viewpoint).

There is even a service of Nine Lessons with Carols included as an appendix for your use. The book originally was accompanied by an LP with selected choirs; I wonder if my copy is worth anything?

Highly recommended.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By S. Arber on 13 Aug. 2007
Format: Paperback
If you want some of the best chugging organ music and quality harmonies for traditional Christmas Carols then this is the best. The other books are good too, but book one is by far the best. Just amazing!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By LizzieB on 12 Aug. 2009
Format: Paperback
This is a comprehensive and varied collection of carols which we found invaluable when arranging our school carol concert; I'm sure that despite its age (1961), other music teachers and choir leaders will find it equally useful.
The following is copied from a note by the editors (who also arranged the carols) at the beginning of the book...
"These 50 Christmas carols, mostly for fixed voices have been chosen and arranged with carol concerts and services in mind...
A little more than half are for unaccompanied singing, the remainder having accompaniments for piano or organ and incorporating varied harmonizations and descants.
There are 4 new carols written especially for the book as well as original compositions by Bach, Berlioz Britten etc.
The texts of the traditional Nine Lessons are printed as an appendix.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Peter Biddlecombe VINE VOICE on 7 Oct. 2009
Format: Paperback
Very surprised to see that there's no review for this (presumably because most potential punters and reviewers already have a dog-eared copy). Carols for Choirs 1 & 2 are pretty much guaranteed to be on any British chorister's bookshelf, and many Christmas concerts or Nine Lessons and Carols services will have about three-quarters of their content taken from these. Some of the arrangements of well-known carols are quite complicated, so may need more rehearsal than you might think. Volume 2 is where John Rutter took over from Reginald Jacques, so does have quite a lot of his work - though not "What Sweeter Music", alas. The rowdy / non-religious side of Christmas is represented, with versions of Deck the Hall and the Twelve Days of Christmas for example (both book 2).
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By J. Matthews on 18 Jan. 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This has been going for a long time now and the harmonies and descants for the traditional carols are now set in stone. This and Carols for Choirs 2 will set you up for always. The larger size than the original version is much more easy to handle - and to read!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Mrs. R. Casselden on 24 May 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have been a member of my local church choir for several years now & we have always used Carols For Choirs 1 but we always seem to be short of copies so I decided to buy my own book. I was pleased to find this copy seems to be the same as the one I have used & it will be useful to know that any notes I make in the book are now just for my benefit & not at the risk of someone else using the book instead of me!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By BUZZ on 16 Jan. 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I purchased this book to replace my original one which had become tatty and well used. I was surprised to find it was much larger than the original. This for me has been great as my eyesight has also become worn and I can still read this without glasses. Great. BUZZ
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