In our Christmas issue, we celebrate the return of singing at Christmas! We visit Worcester Cathedral to meet its choir ahead of its busy festive period, while the King’s Singers reflect on some of their favourite musical Christmases of recent years. As usual, we’ve commissioned an exclusive BBC Music Magazine carol for you to sing. This year’s offering comes from the brilliant British composer, Grace-Evangeline Mason.


Also this month, we meet the BBC National Orchestra of Wales’s principal conductor Ryan Bancroft, to celebrate his win at the RPS Awards and to reflect on a whirlwind first year in the post. Plus, Claire Jackson tries out the projects pairing food and music, Roger Nichols tells the stories of Saint-Saëns’s trips to England and Oliver Condy sits down with the organist Gillian Weir to reflect on her spectacular career. Children’s author Jacqueline Wilson also shares the music that’s made her who she is today.

Rebecca Franks names the best recordings of Respighi’s Botticelli Triptych and Tchaikovsky is our Composer of the Month. You’ll find the first part of Berlioz’s Christmas masterpiece, L’enfance du Christ, on your cover CD. You can hear the second part of this great work next issue.

View all other issues of BBC Music Magazine here.


Click here for the inlay of this month’s cover CD.

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Freya ParrDigital Editor and Staff Writer, BBC Music Magazine

Freya Parr is BBC Music Magazine's Digital Editor and Staff Writer. She has also written for titles including the Guardian, Circus Journal, Frankie and Suitcase Magazine, and runs The Noiseletter, a fortnightly arts and culture publication. Freya's main areas of interest and research lie in 20th-century and contemporary music.