O Come all ye Faithful

This Christmas we count down the days with an advent calendar of the 25 best Christmas carols ever written, as voted for by 50 top choral experts from the across the UK and US.

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O Come all ye Faithful
18 December: O Come all ye Faithful
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Words: JF Wade (probable)

Music: JF Wade (probable)

 

The one hymn without which a Christmas service wouldn’t seem complete. What is it that makes it such a perennial favourite? Is it that chorus that only the upper voices sing first, with everyone else then joining in with gusto? Is it that one final verse that is specially reserved for Christmas morning alone? Or is it those wonderful descants that raise ‘Sing Choirs of Angels’ to the very rafters? Robert Hollingworth, founder of I Fagiolini, has his reasons: ‘I freely admit that my love of it is due to David Willcocks’s arrangement, with the excellent descant in Verse 6 and the way the Verse 7 accompaniment takes you off piste!’

 

December 13: O Magnum Mysterium

December 14: Sussex Carol

December 15: Once in Royal David's City

December 16: What Sweeter Music

December 17: Of the Father's Heart Begotten

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