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Commissioned By

Reyers Brusoe


Voice, SATB Saxophone Quartet, and Piano


4 minutes

Program Notes

The next in a series of contemporary works commissioned by multi-instrumentalist Reyers Brusoe, Noel captures Breeze’s fascination with traditional folk melody and narrative texts in a festive, endearing package. While the work is foundationally a classical art song, frequent interjections from a full sax quintet offer an interesting twist to the otherwise traditional setting. Opting for the sheer lyricism of quant and approachable melody, Breeze none-the-less balances energy and crystal-clear orchestration with the ensemble’s density. Consider, as you listen, how the saxophones augment or support the traditional Christmas story.

Jaclyn Breeze, 2020

Noel by J. R. R. Tolkien

Grim was the world and grey last night:

The moon and stars were fled,
The hall was dark without song or light,

The fires were fallen dead.

The wind in the trees was like to the sea,

And over the mountains' teeth
It whistled bitter-cold and free,
As a sword leapt from its sheath.

The lord of snows up-reared his head;

His mantle long and pale
Upon the bitter blast was spread
And hung o'er hill and dale.

The world was blind, the boughs were bent,

All ways and paths were wild:
Then the veil of cloud apart was rent,
And here was born a Child.

The ancient dome of heaven sheer

Was pricked with distant light;
A star came shining white and clear

Alone above the night.

In the dale of dark in that hour of birth

One voice on a sudden sang:
Then all the bells in Heaven and Earth

Together at midnight rang.

Mary sang in this world below:

They heard her song arise
O'er mist and over mountain snow

To the walls of Paradise,

And the tongue of many bells was stirred

in Heaven's towers to ring
When the voice of mortal maid was heard,

That was mother of Heaven's King.

Glad is the world and fair this night
With stars about its head,
And the hall is filled with laughter and light,

And fires are burning red.
The bells of Paradise now ring
With bells of Christendom,
And Gloria, Gloria we will sing
That God on earth is come.



     2 Scores and Parts $35 

     Score and Parts $20



     Score and Parts $20

     Score Only $15

     Parts Only $5

Scores and performance materials available directly from Jaclyn Breeze at

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