Britten, Tony: Barn House Carol
SATB and organ (with solos and divisions)
Words by Mary Lincoln
Tony Britten, versatile composer of the UEFA Champions League Anthem and work for film, television and theatre, has written a memorable addition to this year’s Christmas celebrations. Timeless in spirit, the Barn House Carol for SATB and organ mingles ancient and modern aspects of the nativity in its haunting music inspired by words imagined as from an unlikely observer of the traditional scene.
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Tony writes: My actress wife Mary Lincoln is also the author of plays and poetry, and we collaborated on Barn House Carol during the lockdown of 2020. We have worked together on music theatre pieces over the years, but Mary’s increasing interest in verse also fuelled my renewed involvement with choral music, both sacred and secular, which began when I was a boy chorister and was consolidated by vocal studies at the Royal College of Music. There is no doubt that having been a singer is a very useful adjunct to composing for mixed voices, complemented by Mary’s skills in both creating and performing the written word. Barn House Carol is a sonnet, and the discipline of her adopting that form and my setting it to music to reflect its elegance has been a challenging and inspiring experience for both of us.
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