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O Come, O Come, Emmanuel

Composer David W. Music
Level 3
No. Handbells 2 or 3 octaves (24 [26] bells)
Length 2' 45" Price $2.25 (U.S.) Released 11/94
Catalog no. 845-101

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"A longtime buddy and I were talking about handbell music recently, and he described a piece he likes by saying, 'Unlike so much bell music, this one doesn't make me swallow hard and look the other way!' I know just what he meant, and this fine setting by David Music of "O Come, O Come, Emmanuel" is a perfect example of that sentiment for me. It is neither difficult for the sake of being hard nor clever for the sake of showing off; it is fine music, beautifully done." ­AAM Journal, September 1995

"A brief setting of 'O Come, O Come, Emmanuel' (845-101, $2) is simple in scope but full of dynamic contrasts, and it interpets well the medieval plainsong Veni, Emmanuel. Most bells of a two-octave set are utitlized, plus two optional bells into the third octave may be added." ­The Hymn, October, 1995

This is probably the most familiar of all Advent hymns and is based on the "Great O's" or "O Antiphons" from eighth-century (or earlier) Greek writings. This arrangement begins with an expressive introcution and then the melody is played against a full accompaniment until the full "Rejoice! Rejoice." It then moves towards a soft, gentle ending. Moderately easy.

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