It all began with the idea that the "other tune" for the words "While shepherds watched" is, of course, the Yorkshire ditty "On Ilkley moor
Well, as the afternoon progressed other tunes got added, resulting in an exciting potpourri for choir and piano. The choir gets to sing "On Ilkla Moor", the Este psalter tune known to all, and also Auld Lang Syne
The altos, in their madrigalian way, get a sly English cadence!.
Meanwhile, the piano gets some sly references to "Sing a song of sixpence" and "Scotland the brave".
If any choral director fancies trying the piece out on his or her choir next year, here are the links for scores ...
(low version in G: ATBB)
(high version in C: SATB and piano)
(medium version in B flat: SATB and piano)
While shepherds watched their flocks by night,
All seated on the ground,
The angel of the Lord came down,
And glory shone around.
"Fear not!" said he, for mighty dread
Had seized their troubled mind.
"Glad tidings of great joy I bring
To you and all mankind.
"To you, in David's town, this day
Is born of David's line
A Saviour, who is Christ the Lord,
And this shall be the sign:
"The heavenly babe you there shall find
To human view displayed,
All meanly wrapped in swathing bands,
And in a manger laid."
Thus spake the seraph and forthwith
appeared a shining throng
of angels praising God who thus
addressed their joyful song
"All glory be to God on high,
And to the Earth be peace;
Good will henceforth from heaven to men,
Begin and never cease!"