World in Solemn Stillness Lay
The composer speaks: "I'm of the minority view that there ought to be a little bittersweetness in sacred Christmas music--to give just a slight nod to the fact that this is not just any baby who has just been born, but a baby who will die for the world's sins. It Came Upon the Midnight Clear hints in that direction with the abrupt change in melody and chord progression in the hymn's third line ('Peace on the Earth, goodwill to men...'). That realization was the inspiration for [this work], a fantasy on It Came Upon the Midnight Clear that explores coexisting feelings of joy and sorrow." The beginning section features random mallets above a sweetly stated melody, followed by a slightly faster section of augmented melody in 5/4 time. The last section features the melody in the treble ledger lines over open arpegiatted chords. A total of 207 measures, this piece progresses through the keys Bb Major, F Major, and G Major.