10/2835L, SATB, $2.50
Date released: 2002
This anthem has an epic feel to it even though it is just under three minutes in length. In it, Hayes combines some of the traditional Latin of the “Gloria” with his own text to share the glorious message that the angels sang that first Christmas. The instrumental introduction generates excitement immediately, starting softly and building to the choir’s fortissimo first entrance – it just explodes! Mixed meters abound particularly 6/8 to 3/4, and majestic fanfare pervades the entire piece save for one contrasting section that is softer and lighter. Though it is vocally demanding and there is 6- to 8-part divisi throughout, the partwriting is straightforward and the range requirements are reasonable. An accomplished pianist is required for the accompaniment, and you won’t want to miss a look at the orchestration. A great piece to open – or close! – next year’s school or church Christmas program.