Peter Bloesch Listen

Holiday Pops Music ~
CHAMBER Orchestra & Chorus

“In the Bleak Midwinter”

(An arrangement of the Holst melody)

See Description, Instrumentation, and Text Info at bottom of page.

SOUND CLIP (of the chamber orchestra version)
WATCH VIDEO ON VIMEO  (of the piano accompaniment version)

SCORE SAMPLES (coming soon)

SCORING:  SATB (minimal divisi), acc. by chamber orchestra* and piano
* See the “Instrumentation” tab below.

AUDIENCE:  Suitable for a concert or church setting — DURATION:  ca. 6:00



NOTE:  This arrangement is also available with piano accompaniment. You can watch a video of the piano-accompaniment version here.

This is a peaceful and subtly orchestrated setting of the Holst melody. All the wind instruments (and a violinist) are given solo parts throughout the arrangement.

CHOIR:  SATB (minimal divisi)

WOODWINDS:  1 Flute, 1 Oboe, 1 Clarinet in Bb, 1 Bassoon

BRASS:  1 Horn

PERCUSSION:  1 percussionist on the following instruments:  Glockenspiel, Suspended Cymbal, Triangle

HARP:  1 Harp

KEYBOARD:  1 Piano (acoustic or electronic)

STRINGS:  4,4,2,2,1, but the violins could be reduced to 3,3 or even 2,2

In the Bleak Midwinter

Words by Christina Rossetti, 1872

Complete text:

In the bleak midwinter,
Frosty wind made moan,
Earth stood hard as iron,
Water like a stone.
Snow had fallen, snow on snow,
Snow on snow,
In the bleak midwinter,
Long ago.

Our God, Heav'n cannot hold Him,
Nor earth sustain.
Heav'n and earth shall flee away
When He comes to reign.
In the bleak midwinter
A stable-place sufficed
The Lord God Almighty,
Jesus Christ.

Enough for Him, whom cherubim
Worship night and day:
A breastful of milk
And a mangerful of hay.
Enough for Him, whom angels
Fall down before:
The ox and ass and camel
Which adore.

Angels and archangels
May have gathered there,
Cherubim and seraphim
Thronged the air.
But only His dear mother,
In her maiden bliss,
Worshipped the Beloved
With a kiss.

What can I give Him,
Poor as I am?
If I were a shepherd,
I would bring a lamb.
If I were a wise man,
I would do my part.
Yet what I can I give Him:
Give my heart.

Watch video below!
(Note: This video features the piano version.)