Sacrum Mysterium: A Celtic Christmas Vespers | Avie AV2269

Sacrum Mysterium: A Celtic Christmas Vespers


Currently out of stock at the UK suppliers. Available to order, but is likely to take longer than usual to despatch

Label: Avie

Cat No: AV2269

Format: CD + DVD

Number of Discs: 2

Release Date: 5th November 2012



Jeannette Sorrell (harpsichord)
Meredith Hall (soprano)
La Nef
Apolloís Fire


Jeannette Sorrell


Jeannette Sorrell (harpsichord)
Meredith Hall (soprano)
La Nef
Apolloís Fire


Jeannette Sorrell


Long before Christianity took hold in Scotland and Ireland, the ancient Celts celebrated the Winter Solstice and the coming of light and hope. Jeannette Sorrell's celebration of Celtic artistic traditions interweaves selections from medieval Vespers with ancient pagan carols and popular tunes from 17th-century Welsh and Scottish manuscripts.

Joyous fiddle tunes and Irish dances burst forth against the vivid backdrop of the unfolding Christ story. The colourful sounds of antiphonal bagpipes, archlute, harp, percussion, fiddles and recorders are blended in musical arrangements by Sylvain Bergeron and Sorrell.

The Montreal-based early-music ensemble La Nef joins Apollo's Fire for this collaboration featuring the radiant Canadian soprano Meredith Hall.

"A grand holiday stew made from deliciously blended sacred and secular ingredients...An affecting and exuberant gathering...From utter simplicity to heartfelt passion." - Cleveland Plain Dealer

The CD is complemented with a bonus DVD featuring several songs from the album.


1. Processional: Oikan ayns Bethlehem (The Babe in Bethlehem) (Manx Gaelic Carol)
2. Duan Nollaig (Scottish Gaelic Carol)

From The Vespers of St Kentigern:
3. Deus in adjutorium - Alleluia (Alleluia by Jeannette Sorrell)
4. Responsorium - Gloria Patri
5. Hymnus: Iste confessor Domini
6. Alleluia (Jeannette Sorrell)
7. The Road to Lisdoonvarna (Traditional Irish jig)

Offertory & Carols:
8. Veni, veni, Emmanuel (12th-century carol)
9. Nowell, Nowell, Tydings Trew (15th-century carol)
10. NoŽl nouvelet, 15th-century French/Breton carol, Oxford English text
11. Sussex Carol (On Christmas Night) (Traditional English)
12. Come, My Children Dere (17th century Scottish carol, arr. Alexander Montgomerie & Jeannette Sorrell)
13. Wat ye what I got yestreen (Skene MS, Scottish, 1715)
14. Taladh Chriosda (Christ Child's Lullaby), Scottish Gaelic lullaby
15. Hodie, Christus natus est (Gregorian Antiphon to the Magnificat, Vespers for Christmas Day)

From The Vespers of St Kentigern:
16. Magnificat anima mea
17. Antiphon de Maria ad Vesperas - Benedicamus

Hymn & Carols:
18. All Sons of Adam, Sing Nowell! (Tune from Forbes, Songs & Fancies, Aberdeen, 1662)
19. What Child is This? (Tune: My Lagan Love, traditional Irish air)
20. Usheg veg ruy (Little Red Bird) (Manx Gaelic lullaby)
21. O'Carolan's Cup Turlough O'Carolan (1670-1738)
22. O'Carolan's Favorite Jig (Turlough O'Carolan)
23. At Work on the Land/Tatter Jack Walsh (arr. Tina Bergmann and Jem Moore)
24. The Seven Rejoyces of Mary (Traditional Irish carol)
25. Postlude: Christmas Eve (Irish reel)

Bonus DVD:
Highlights from the premiere concerts at the stunning Trinity Cathedral in Cleveland, Ohio

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