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The Christmas Album / Libera boy choir

Audio Samples

>Handel, George Frideric : Joy to the World (theme by Handel)
>Traditional, Christmas : Still, Still, Still (Stille, stille, stille) (Austrian)
>Leontovych, Mykola : Carol of the Bells
>Traditional, Christmas : O come, o come, Emmanuel (Veni, veni, Emmanuel), carol
>Gauntlett, Henry John : Once in Royal David's City, carol
>Adam, Adolphe : Cantique de Noel for voice & orchestra ("Minuit, Chretiens," "O Holy Night")
>Berlin, Irving : Holiday Inn
>Britten, Benjamin : Corpus Christi Carol, for voice or unison chorus & organ
>Traditional, Christmas : In dulci jubilo (Piae Cantiones)
>Blane, Ralph : Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas (for the film Meet Me in St. Louis)
>Edler, Hans : Sing the Story
>Traditional, Christmas : Coventry Carol (2)~Lully, Lulla, Thou Little Tiny Child
>Traditional, Christmas : The First Nowell (English)
>Prizeman, Robert : Jubilate
>Traditional, Christmas : While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks (adapted from Handel)
>Joel, Billy : Lullabye "Goodnight, my angel"

Album Summary

>Handel, George Frideric : Joy to the World (theme by Handel)
>Traditional, Christmas : Still, Still, Still (Stille, stille, stille) (Austrian)
>Leontovych, Mykola : Carol of the Bells
>Traditional, Christmas : O come, o come, Emmanuel (Veni, veni, Emmanuel), carol
>Gauntlett, Henry John : Once in Royal David's City, carol
>Adam, Adolphe : Cantique de Noel for voice & orchestra ("Minuit, Chretiens," "O Holy Night")
>Berlin, Irving : Holiday Inn
>Britten, Benjamin : Corpus Christi Carol, for voice or unison chorus & organ
>Traditional, Christmas : In dulci jubilo (Piae Cantiones)
>Blane, Ralph : Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas (for the film Meet Me in St. Louis)
>Edler, Hans : Sing the Story
>Traditional, Christmas : Coventry Carol (2)~Lully, Lulla, Thou Little Tiny Child
>Traditional, Christmas : The First Nowell (English)
>Prizeman, Robert : Jubilate
>Traditional, Christmas : While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks (adapted from Handel)
>Joel, Billy : Lullabye "Goodnight, my angel"
Performers Conductor Ensemble
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Composers
Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: The Music Place, London, England (05/2011-07/2011).

For an act famed for their angelic vocals and heart-warming celestial sound, it's a surprise that The Christmas Album is the first-ever festive release from South London boy sopranos Libera. As you'd expect from a group who may regularly change their lineup but who haven't changed their sound in 16 years, its mixture of traditional carols, yuletide standards, and rather randomly, Billy Joel's "Lullabye (Goodnight My Angel)," (which along with "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" also appeared on the deluxe edition of 2010's Peace), stick closely to the usual Libera formula of Robert Prizeman's soothing, if often sentimental, minimal arrangements. It's all very pleasant, of course, but apart from a rare tenor vocal courtesy of Josh Madine on "Coventry Carol," and the haunting Gregorian chanting on "Carol of the Bells," there's little here that stands out among the consistently tranquil production, which is sometimes guilty of draining all the seasonal joy out of the source material, while the two uninspiring original compositions ("Jubilate Deo," "Sing the Story") are unlikely to be considered future Christmas classics. However, their soaring harmonies are undoubtedly impressive, and on the likes of "O Holy Night," "Once in Royal David's City," and "Joy to the World," they authentically evoke the atmosphere of a communal midnight mass. Perhaps the most predictable festive album of 2011, The Christmas Album isn't likely to convert any new Libera fans, but it's also equally unlikely to lose any, either. ~ Jon O'Brien



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Works Details

>Handel, George Frideric : Joy to the World (theme by Handel)
  • Performers: Steven Geraghty (Recorder); Steven Geraghty (Clarinet); Fiona Pears (Violin); Steven Geraghty (Keyboards); Steven Geraghty (Piano); Sam Coates (Programming); Robert Prizeman (Keyboards); Sam Coates (Piano); Ben Crawley (Programming); Robert Prizeman (Piano); Sam Coates (Keyboards); Anna Stokes (Flute); Charlotte Ashley (Oboe); Elizabeth May (Cello); Mason Neely (Percussion); Steven Geraghty (Programming)
  • Conductor: Robert Prizeman
  • Running Time: 2 min. 52 sec.
  • Period Time: Baroque
  • Form: Christmas
  • Written: 1742

>Traditional, Christmas : Still, Still, Still (Stille, stille, stille) (Austrian)
  • Performers: Sam Coates (Programming); Robert Prizeman (Keyboards); Robert Prizeman (Piano); Ben Crawley (Programming); Sam Coates (Piano); Sam Coates (Keyboards); Elizabeth May (Cello); Steven Geraghty (Clarinet); Ralph Skan (Voice); Charlotte Ashley (Oboe); Anna Stokes (Flute); Steven Geraghty (Programming); Steven Geraghty (Recorder); Steven Geraghty (Keyboards); Fiona Pears (Violin); Steven Geraghty (Piano); Mason Neely (Percussion)
  • Conductor: Robert Prizeman
  • Running Time: 3 min. 53 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Christmas
  • Written: 1819

>Leontovych, Mykola : Carol of the Bells
  • Performers: Steven Geraghty (Clarinet); Steven Geraghty (Piano); Steven Geraghty (Keyboards); Steven Geraghty (Programming); Fiona Pears (Violin); Steven Geraghty (Recorder); Mason Neely (Percussion); Sam Coates (Piano); Charlotte Ashley (Oboe); Anna Stokes (Flute); Elizabeth May (Cello); Ben Crawley (Programming); Robert Prizeman (Keyboards); Sam Coates (Programming); Sam Coates (Keyboards); Robert Prizeman (Piano)
  • Conductor: Robert Prizeman
  • Running Time: 3 min. 7 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Form: Christmas
  • Written: 1910

>Traditional, Christmas : O come, o come, Emmanuel (Veni, veni, Emmanuel), carol
  • Performers: Robert Prizeman (Piano); Robert Prizeman (Keyboards); Steven Geraghty (Programming); Steven Geraghty (Keyboards); Fiona Pears (Violin); Steven Geraghty (Clarinet); Ben Crawley (Programming); Sam Coates (Programming); Sam Coates (Piano); Sam Coates (Keyboards); Elizabeth May (Cello); Anna Stokes (Flute); Charlotte Ashley (Oboe); Daniel Fontannaz (Voice); Mason Neely (Percussion); Steven Geraghty (Piano); Steven Geraghty (Recorder)
  • Conductor: Robert Prizeman
  • Running Time: 4 min. 8 sec.
  • Period Time: Medieval
  • Form: Choral
  • Written: 12th Century

>Gauntlett, Henry John : Once in Royal David's City, carol
  • Performers: Steven Geraghty (Recorder); Robert Prizeman (Piano); Sam Coates (Programming); Ben Crawley (Programming); Anna Stokes (Flute); Elizabeth May (Cello); Eoghan McCarthy (Voice); Sam Coates (Piano); Mason Neely (Percussion); Sam Coates (Keyboards); Steven Geraghty (Piano); Steven Geraghty (Programming); Charlotte Ashley (Oboe); Robert Prizeman (Keyboards); Steven Geraghty (Keyboards); Fiona Pears (Violin); Steven Geraghty (Clarinet)
  • Conductor: Robert Prizeman
  • Running Time: 3 min. 27 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Written: circa 1850

>Adam, Adolphe : Cantique de Noël for voice & orchestra ("Minuit, Chrétiens," "O Holy Night")
  • Performers: Robert Prizeman (Piano); Sam Coates (Programming); Robert Prizeman (Keyboards); Sam Coates (Keyboards); Ben Crawley (Programming); Sam Coates (Piano); Elizabeth May (Cello); Charlotte Ashley (Oboe); Anna Stokes (Flute); Fiona Pears (Violin); Steven Geraghty (Recorder); Steven Geraghty (Keyboards); Steven Geraghty (Clarinet); Steven Geraghty (Programming); Steven Geraghty (Piano); Mason Neely (Percussion); Ralph Skan (Voice)
  • Conductor: Robert Prizeman
  • Running Time: 4 min. 42 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Vocal
  • Written: 1851

>Berlin, Irving : Holiday Inn
  • Performers: Steven Geraghty (Piano); Steven Geraghty (Clarinet); Fiona Pears (Violin); Steven Geraghty (Programming); Steven Geraghty (Keyboards); Charlotte Ashley (Oboe); Sam Coates (Piano); Stefan Leadbeater (Voice); Mason Neely (Percussion); Steven Geraghty (Recorder); Anna Stokes (Flute); Elizabeth May (Cello); Sam Coates (Keyboards); Robert Prizeman (Piano); Robert Prizeman (Keyboards); Ben Crawley (Programming); Sam Coates (Programming)
  • Conductor: Robert Prizeman
  • Running Time: 3 min. 48 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1942

>Britten, Benjamin : Corpus Christi Carol, for voice or unison chorus & organ
  • Performers: Robert Prizeman (Keyboards); Sam Coates (Programming); Charlotte Ashley (Oboe); Ben Crawley (Programming); Anna Stokes (Flute); Steven Geraghty (Keyboards); Fiona Pears (Violin); Steven Geraghty (Piano); Steven Geraghty (Programming); Elizabeth May (Cello); Robert Prizeman (Piano); Steven Geraghty (Clarinet); Steven Geraghty (Recorder); Mason Neely (Percussion); James Mordaunt (Voice); Sam Coates (Keyboards); Ralph Skan (Voice); Sam Coates (Piano)
  • Conductor: Robert Prizeman
  • Running Time: 3 min. 15 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Christmas
  • Written: 1961

>Traditional, Christmas : In dulci jubilo (Piæ Cantiones)
  • Performers: Fiona Pears (Violin); Steven Geraghty (Clarinet); Steven Geraghty (Recorder); Steven Geraghty (Programming); Robert Prizeman (Keyboards); Robert Prizeman (Piano); Charlotte Ashley (Oboe); Ben Crawley (Programming); Elizabeth May (Cello); Sam Coates (Piano); Sam Coates (Keyboards); Anna Stokes (Flute); Sam Coates (Programming); Steven Geraghty (Piano); Steven Geraghty (Keyboards); Mason Neely (Percussion)
  • Conductor: Robert Prizeman
  • Running Time: 3 min. 14 sec.
  • Period Time: Medieval
  • Form: Christmas
  • Written: circa 1400

>Blane, Ralph : Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas (for the film Meet Me in St. Louis)
  • Performers: Robert Prizeman (Keyboards); Fiona Pears (Violin); Ben Crawley (Programming); Sam Coates (Programming); Steven Geraghty (Keyboards); Robert Prizeman (Piano); Charlotte Ashley (Oboe); Mason Neely (Percussion); James Mordaunt (Voice); Steven Geraghty (Recorder); Steven Geraghty (Programming); Ralph Skan (Voice); Sam Coates (Piano); Steven Geraghty (Piano); Steven Geraghty (Clarinet); Sam Coates (Keyboards); Elizabeth May (Cello); Anna Stokes (Flute)
  • Conductor: Robert Prizeman
  • Notes: This work was written in collaboration with Hugh Martin (1914 - 2011).
  • Running Time: 3 min. 17 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Christmas
  • Written: circa 1944

>Edler, Hans : Sing the Story
  • Performers: Ben Crawley (Programming); Sam Coates (Piano); Robert Prizeman (Piano); Sam Coates (Programming); Robert Prizeman (Keyboards); Elizabeth May (Cello); Anna Stokes (Flute); Charlotte Ashley (Oboe); Luke Collins (Voice); Steven Geraghty (Clarinet); Steven Geraghty (Piano); Mason Neely (Percussion); Fiona Pears (Violin); Steven Geraghty (Recorder); Steven Geraghty (Programming); Steven Geraghty (Keyboards); Sam Coates (Keyboards)
  • Conductor: Robert Prizeman
  • Running Time: 3 min. 43 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Vocal

>Traditional, Christmas : Coventry Carol (2)~Lully, Lulla, Thou Little Tiny Child
  • Performers: Stefan Leadbeater (Voice); Steven Geraghty (Keyboards); Mason Neely (Percussion); Ralph Skan (Voice); Elizabeth May (Cello); Sam Coates (Piano); Charlotte Ashley (Oboe); Joshua Madine (Voice); Fiona Pears (Violin); Anna Stokes (Flute); Steven Geraghty (Programming); Steven Geraghty (Piano); Steven Geraghty (Recorder); Steven Geraghty (Clarinet); Sam Coates (Programming); Robert Prizeman (Keyboards); Robert Prizeman (Piano); Ben Crawley (Programming); Sam Coates (Keyboards)
  • Conductor: Robert Prizeman
  • Running Time: 3 min. 24 sec.
  • Period Time: Renaissance
  • Form: Christmas
  • Written: 1498

>Traditional, Christmas : The First Nowell (English)
  • Performers: Sam Coates (Piano); Robert Prizeman (Keyboards); Anna Stokes (Flute); Sam Coates (Keyboards); Robert Prizeman (Piano); Sam Coates (Programming); Elizabeth May (Cello); Ben Crawley (Programming); Mason Neely (Percussion); Steven Geraghty (Keyboards); Steven Geraghty (Piano); Steven Geraghty (Programming); Freddie Ingles (Voice); Fiona Pears (Violin); Steven Geraghty (Clarinet); Steven Geraghty (Recorder); Charlotte Ashley (Oboe)
  • Conductor: Robert Prizeman
  • Running Time: 3 min. 39 sec.
  • Form: Christmas
  • Written: by 1823

>Prizeman, Robert : Jubilate
  • Performers: Sam Coates (Programming); Elizabeth May (Cello); Anna Stokes (Flute); Mason Neely (Percussion); Charlotte Ashley (Oboe); Jakob De Menezes-Wood (Voice); Sam Coates (Piano); Fiona Pears (Violin); Steven Geraghty (Programming); Sam Coates (Keyboards); Steven Geraghty (Piano); Steven Geraghty (Clarinet); Steven Geraghty (Keyboards); Ben Crawley (Programming); Robert Prizeman (Keyboards); Robert Prizeman (Piano); Steven Geraghty (Recorder)
  • Conductor: Robert Prizeman
  • Running Time: 4 min. 26 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary

>Traditional, Christmas : While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks (adapted from Handel)
  • Performers: Fiona Pears (Violin); Anna Stokes (Flute); Charlotte Ashley (Oboe); Steven Geraghty (Keyboards); Cassius O'Connell-White (Voice); Mason Neely (Percussion); Robert Prizeman (Piano); Elizabeth May (Cello); Robert Prizeman (Keyboards); Ben Crawley (Programming); Sam Coates (Piano); Sam Coates (Keyboards); Sam Coates (Programming); Steven Geraghty (Piano); Steven Geraghty (Clarinet); Steven Geraghty (Recorder); Steven Geraghty (Programming)
  • Conductor: Robert Prizeman
  • Running Time: 2 min. 34 sec.
  • Period Time: Baroque
  • Form: Christmas
  • Written: 1728

>Joel, Billy : Lullabye "Goodnight, my angel"
  • Performers: Fiona Pears (Violin); Steven Geraghty (Piano); Steven Geraghty (Clarinet); Steven Geraghty (Recorder); Steven Geraghty (Keyboards); Steven Geraghty (Programming); Joshua Madine (Voice); Benedict Philipp (Voice); Mason Neely (Percussion); Jakob De Menezes-Wood (Voice); Anna Stokes (Flute); Sam Coates (Keyboards); Robert Prizeman (Keyboards); Sam Coates (Programming); Robert Prizeman (Piano); Ben Crawley (Programming); Elizabeth May (Cello); Charlotte Ashley (Oboe); Sam Coates (Piano)
  • Conductor: Robert Prizeman
  • Running Time: 3 min. 51 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary