May 9, 2011 by Dennis C. Cook
Many times, publishers print cantatas for smaller churches in mind. Sometimes, small churches have many resources, much talent, and unlimited abilities. But, in most circumstances, smaller churches have limited resources, talent, and people. With that in mind, here are some 2011 Christmas cantatas for the smaller church:
Light Looked Down – from Word Music features:
- Optional drama script and production notes included in the book
- Accessible arrangements for limited rehearsal time
- Option to include children’s choir
- Include congregation on carol selections in “Candlelight Processional”
A Song in the Air – from LifeWay features:
- From the highly acclaimed Let’s Sing series comes another Dennis and Nan Allen creation–A Song in the Air. This accessible SATB musical includes songs from Chris Tomlin, Michael W. Smith, Bill and Gloria Gaither, Martin Smith, and David Meece.
- Conveniently divided into four sections, A Song in the Air can easily be presented over the four Sundays of Advent or used in its entirety in one setting. Nan Allen’s narration creatively ties all the songs together in a beautiful seamless service.
- The conveniently packaged Kit (10 Choral Books, 1 Listening CD, 1 Accompaniment CD, and 3 Posters) saves your church’s budget and Rehearsal Tracks make learning even easier.
Emmanuel Has Come – from Lillenas features:
- Five songs, arranged for unison or easy two part harmonies by some of the best arrangers and orchestrators in the business, all tied together with well-placed narration, make for a complete Christmas mini-musical that will fit nicely into any worship service or other Christmas program.
- This is a great addition to the repertoire of small or inexperienced choirs, senior adults, or choirs with little time to rehearse. Any of the songs can be easily lifted out and effectively used as stand-alone anthems.
Come and Adore Him – from Lillenas features (made for Senior Adult choirs):
- a delightful mix of traditional Christmas favorites with new sounds that will enhance any holiday celebration.
- Every song in the collection is masterfully arranged for senior adults, by Steve W. Mauldin, in basic four-part harmony that works for any size choir, with extra cue notes provided for larger or more experienced choirs, and traditional sounds of classic carols are interspersed with foot-stompin’ Southern gospel that will raise the rafters.
- From the lovely strains of the traditional “What Child Is This?” to the Southern gospel treat “Every Light That Shines at Christmas,” these heart-warming songs with accessible choral voicings and lush orchestrations provide all the fixin’s for a down-home Christmas musical feast!
Shout the Good News - from Lorenz features (medium music level):
- a celebration of Jesus’ birth and of those messengers who helped God’s purposes to be fulfilled.
- New material is blended with beloved carols, creating a rich tapestry of music for Christmas worship.
- The biblical narrative is rich as well.
- The culmination is a congregational affirmation that all of us are called to be messengers of this good news of Christ’s birth and love!
- Available in SATB or SAB versions, this versatile work for choirs large or small offers opportunities to involve the congregation in the singing of beloved carol melodies.
- It is equally effective whether accompanied by piano alone or by the colorful orchestration utilizing either the accompaniment CD or live instrumentalists.
Majesty of Heaven – from Praise Gathering features:
- a beautifully crafted retelling of the miraculous events of that first Christmas. Our Father in Heaven bridged the chasm between His Majesty and our humanity when He sent His only Son, the MAJESTY OF HEAVEN.
- Tom Fettke has done a masterful job of creating an experience that is wondrous, worshipful and rewarding. Russell Mauldin’s orchestrations are exquisite and extraordinary.
- The musical features songs by Chris Tomlin, Steven Curtis Chapman, Shannon Wexelberg, Steve Green, Jay Rouse, Randy Vader, Buddy Greene and Darryl K. Williams.
- A magnificent new setting of “The Majesty and Glory of Your Name” also makes a significant contribution to the power and effectiveness of the message.
- The narrations, by Randy Vader and Mark Lowry, are profound and moving. The MAJESTY OF HEAVEN is 38 minutes in length. It’s accessibility makes it appropriate for choirs of any size.