The Choir’s Sandbox
Ralph Vaughan Williams’s setting of “The Salutation Carol”
One of RVW’s last works was a collection of music for a nativity play, “The First Nowell,” which was first performed in 1958. John France has a helpful essay about the work online at MusicWeb International.
“The Salutation Carol” is used twice in the work. Here’s the first instance of it:
And here’s the second (and shorter) instance:
Both of these performances are by the Joyful Company of Singers and the City of London Sinfonia conducted by Richard Hickox.
Music by Richard Rodney Bennett
Among Bennett’s choral compositions is a set of five carols, all based on very early texts. Here is the first in the set, a version of “There Is No Rose,” sung by New York Polyphony (from the CD Sing Thee Nowell).
The fourth in the set is “Sweet was the song” sung by Polyphony, conducted by Stephen Layton (from the CD O magnum misterium).
Another carol setting (not part of the group of five referenced above) is Balulalow. Anonymous 4 sing this on their CD Wolcum Yule.