• John McCabe
  • Upon the High Midnight (1973)

  • Novello & Co Ltd (World)

Scoring varies for each of the three carols

  • Organ (optional)
  • SATB
  • Soprano, Alto, Tenor, Bass
  • 8 min

Programme Note

A little child there is y-born (Anon. 15th century)
Dormi, Jesu (Anon.)
In Bethlehem, that fair city (Anon. 14th century)

Upon the High Midnight is a triptych of Christmas carols composed at different times during the 1960s and early 1970s. The first carol is a gentle, rather modal setting of anonymous 15th century words. The second, Dormi, Jesu, was the latest to be composed and is a slightly more chromatic setting of an anonymous Latin text. In Bethlehem, that fair city was originally written for a concert at the Liverpool Institute High School (my old school) in 1960, and was revised for inclusion in this group - it is livelier in mood, with a text derived from anonymous 14th century words. All the carols are unaccompanied, but there is an optional organ accompaniment for the last.