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The Bells of Christmas (citing "I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day")

Christmas Anthem for Two Equal Treble or Mixed Voices, Piano and Handbells

By Gary Parks

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Choral 2-Part treble or mixed voices, piano, and handbells
Christmas Anthem for Two Equal Treble or Mixed Voices, Piano and Handbells. Composed by Gary Parks. Christmas and Holiday. Christmas. With Standard notation. Abingdon Press #712-40916. Published by Abingdon Press (PR.712409160).

Item Number: PR.712409160

The options abound on this crowd pleaser! Equally suitable for two-part treble or mixed voices, or any combination thereof, this could be a stunning, yet easy-to-learn opening for a worship service or concert. Part 1 introduces a new tune filled with excitement. Part 2 brings us the favorite carol, "I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day." Put them together for a partner song!

The pianist will need to be rhythmically secure and have an excellent "inner" metronome to help keep the piece together when adding handbells. The handbell part is easy and could be played by a children's or youth choir. The part could be played by as a few as two ringers (four in hand) or as many as seven.

Performance options include combining choirs: children could sing Part 1, adults/youth Part 2. Consider memorizing the first 10 measures of the handbell part and processing the bells as they ring. Part 1 could process in with them as an Introit to worship or opening of a seasonal concert. If your congregation is familiar with the song, "I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day," they could join in the singing of the tune.

Appropriate days: Christmas Eve/Day, Christmastide.

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