2011 Choir Christmas Program

Yesterday was our choir's Christmas program. I thought it would be nice to include it here, for future reference. If you read and listen along (sorry, some of the formatting is weird on the blog), just pretend our choir sounded as good as the musicians you hear. :) We came pretty close, after all.

In all seriousness, being choir director to these wonderful folks here has been the highlight of my year. It's been really fun to feel their trust in me and their willingness to change their notions of good singing for me. As a result, the sound was something I was genuinely taken by, week after week. They did a wonderful, wonderful job yesterday. I'm so thankful to be at the helm.

ps--If you're really not interested in all this music business, you still HAVE to scroll down and listen to "What Sweeter Music." And you have to listen at least 3 times. And then you will be happy.


2011 Choir Christmas Program: Jesus Christ--Prophesies, Witnesses, Testimonies

Narrator: Helaman 14:1-3, 5-8
And now it came to pass that Samuel, the Lamanite, did prophesy a great many more things which cannot be written. And behold, he said unto them: Behold, I give unto you a sign; for five years more cometh, and behold, then cometh the Son of God to redeem all those who shall believe on his name. And behold, this will I give unto you for a sign at the time of his coming; for behold, there shall be great lights in heaven, insomuch that in the night before he cometh there shall be no darkness, insomuch that it shall appear unto man as if it was day.  And behold, there shall a new star arise, such an one as ye never have beheld; and this also shall be a sign unto you. And it shall come to pass that whosoever shall believe on the Son of God, the same shall have everlasting life.
Primary: Samuel Tells of Baby Jesus (pg. 36) (picture my kids singing this--Zane front and center, first with his fist at his chin like the Thinker, then later with big smiles, like he's telling you the coolest thing in the world. And picture Annie singing from the front row in her pop's lap, due to someone telling her not to come up too early, her freaking out, then her saying, "oh------kay" in her sweet way and at least coming up to the front row. progress, and her pops got a personal performance.)
Narrator: Micah 5:2
But thou, Beth-lehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.

Congregation: O Little Town of Bethlehem (Hymn 208)

Narrator: Mosiah 3:2-3, 5, 8
             And the things which I shall tell you are made known unto me by an angel from God. And he said unto me: Awake; and I awoke, and behold he stood before me. And he said unto me: Awake, and hear the words which I shall tell thee; for behold, I am come to declare unto you the glad tidings of great joy. For behold, the time cometh, and is not far distant, that with power, the Lord Omnipotent who reigneth, who was, and is from all eternity to all eternity, shall come down from heaven among the children of men, and shall dwell in a tabernacle of clay, and shall go forth amongst men, working mighty miracles, such as healing the sick, raising the dead, causing the lame to walk, the blind to receive their sight, and the deaf to hear, and curing all manner of diseases. And he shall be called Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the Father of heaven and earth, the Creator of all things from the beginning; and his mother shall be called Mary.
Narrator: Isaiah 11:1-5
And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots: And the spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord; And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the Lord: and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears: But with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth: And righteousness shall be the girdle of his loins, and faithfulness the girdle of his reins.
Narrator: 2 Corinthians 4:6                                                                                                                        For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
Narrator: Luke 1: 26-35                                                                                                                        And in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, To a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary. And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women. And when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this should be. And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end. Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man? And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.
Narrator: Luke 2:1-7
And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Cæsar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed. And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judæa, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:) To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child. And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.
Congregation: Once in Royal David’s City (Hymn 205)

Choir: Joseph Dearest, Joseph Mine (This is a wonderful video coupling too.)

Narrator: Luke 2: 8-20
And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men. And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us. And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child. And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds. But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.
Choir: While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks This link isn't working today, but you can see the sheet music there, and the link has worked in the past, so I'll hope to pops up again soon. We did a better job than these guys anyway. :) we sounded like real singers.

Narrator: Matthew 2: 1-2, 9-11
             Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judæa in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him. And, lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was. When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy. And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh.
Congregation: With Wondering Awe (Hymn 210)

Narrator: Mosiah 4: 7-9
I say, that this is the man who receiveth salvation, through the atonement which was prepared from the foundation of the world for all mankind, which ever were since the fall of Adam, or who are, or who ever shall be, even unto the end of the world. And this is the means whereby salvation cometh. And there is none other salvation save this which hath been spoken of; neither are there any conditions whereby man can be saved except the conditions which I have told you. Believe in God; believe that he is, and that he created all things, both in heaven and in earth; believe that he has all wisdom, and all power, both in heaven and in earth; believe that man doth not comprehend all the things which the Lord can comprehend.
Narrator: 2 Nephi 22:2-6                                                                                                                             Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid; for the Lord Jehovah is my strength and my song; he also has become my salvation. Therefore, with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation. And in that day shall ye say: Praise the Lord, call upon his name, declare his doings among the people, make mention that his name is exalted. Sing unto the Lord; for he hath done excellent things; this is known in all the earth. Cry out and shout, thou inhabitant of Zion; for great is the Holy One of Israel in the midst of thee.
Choir: What Sweeter Music (I melt)
Narrator: Doctrine and Covenants 76: 22-24
And now, after the many testimonies which have been given of him, this is the testimony, last of all, which we give of him: That he lives! For we saw him, even on the right hand of God; and we heard the voice bearing record that he is the Only Begotten of the Father—That by him, and through him, and of him, the worlds are and were created, and the inhabitants thereof are begotten sons and daughters unto God.

Narrator: Isaiah 25:9
And it shall be said in that day, Lo, this is our God; we have waited for him, and he will save us: this is the Lord; we have waited for him, we will be glad and rejoice in his salvation.
Narrator: Mosiah 15:28-31
And now I say unto you that the time shall come that the salvation of the Lord shall be declared to every nation, kindred, tongue, and people. Yea, Lord, thy watchmen shall lift up their voice; with the voice together shall they sing; for they shall see eye to eye, when the Lord shall bring again Zion. Break forth into joy, sing together, ye waste places of Jerusalem; for the Lord hath comforted his people, he hath redeemed Jerusalem. The Lord hath made bare his holy arm in the eyes of all the nations; and all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of our God.
Congregation (closing song): Oh Come, All Ye Faithful (Hymn 202)


Ginger said…
I would totally in be choir if you were my choir director. I tried to be in choir a couple months ago, buy my opinions about some music are too strong that I didn't want to be apart of the low quality of it all.

I listened to the Rutter piece. It was beautiful. Thanks!
Jenneka said…
You forgot to mention how much of the program we were able to sing WITHOUT PIANO - which is one of my favorite ways to sing because you really have to listen to the other singers.

I loved all the numbers we performed, but I think 'Lo How a Rose' was my personal best. I could have gone home happy after just singing that first one.

But, Michelle, don't EVER think that our choir would be anything but average if you weren't the one directing it! You teach in a way that makes our desire to change - to be better - so strong... it's absolutely compelling. You truly have a gift.
gaylene said…
I'm with Jenneka on everything she said (not that the rose song was HER personal best, but mine!). We couldn't have done it without you!
walt or jean said…
Dear, Dear Michelle:
You touch all of our lives!
Kjerstin said…
Since I'm not a choir singing kind of gal, you'd think that I wouldn't be able to chime in here...but I can. Anyone who's even SEEN you lead a choir knows how amazing you are! I've had several people here tell me that they just wanted to be better when you were the choir director. You bring out the best in people, and not just in choir!