Scoring: SATB divisi (a cappella)
Written: Worcester, UK (2007)
Publisher: Edition Peters (also available as a download)
This arrangement is one of several Jim was commissioned to write by Voces8 for their Christmas album, Snowed In, and it was nominated for a 2009 CARA award. Its stillness and simplicity is intended to evoke both the awe and fear that Mary must have felt upon being told she was to give birth to the long-expected Messiah
Listen to the Ora Singers perform this arrangement on the Audio page.
Gabriel's message - trad. Basque/S. Baring Gould (1834-1924)
The angel Gabriel from heaven came,
His wings as drifted snow, his eyes as flame.
"All hail," said he, "thou lowly maiden Mary,
Most highly favoured lady." Gloria!
"For known a blessed mother thou shalt be,
All generations laud and honor thee.
Thy Son shall be Emmanuel, by seers foretold.
Most highly favored lady." Gloria!
Then gentle Mary meekly bowed her head;
"To me be as it pleaseth God," she said.
"My soul shall laud and magnify his holy name."
Most highly favored lady. Gloria!
Of her Emmanuel, the Christ, was born
In Bethlehem, all on a Christmas morn.
And Christian folk throughout the world will ever say,
"Most highly favored lady." Gloria!