Recording information: St. Francis Xavier Catholic Parish, Phoenix, AZ (02/23/2012-02/25/2012); St. Wilfrid of York Episcopal Church, Huntington Beach, (02/23/2012-02/25/2012).
Photographers: Steve Porter ; Alan Gibby.
The combined choirs of the Mormon Choral Organizations (representing members of the Mormon community in the southwestern United States) are not quite as large as the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, but they do come close to equaling it in sound and definitely equal it in intent and expression. This is true particularly in these Christmas carols, accompanied at times by brass, handbells, or full orchestra. The carols are arranged into five suites by Brett Stewart, co-conductor, who gives the seasonal favorites an abundant majesty and reverence, with interesting harmonies and instrumental choices. Some may find the grandiose music and seriousness of the performances overwhelm any festiveness, but others may find it suits the season more fittingly than most music heard in public spaces and on the air every December. ~ Patsy Morita