Re-entry, after falling out of the Hall of Fame last year. 2nd of Whitacre's 3 entries this year.
Eric Whitacre's short choral composition is a Christmas piece based on a Latin poem which opens, "Light, warm and heavy as pure gold," and ends, "angels sing softly to the new born baby. "Whitacre wrote in the printed score: "… if the tight harmonies are carefully tuned and balanced they will shimmer and glow". In contrast to other works by the composer, the piece is particularly suitable for church services.
Whitacre set the text for mixed choir a cappella in 2000. Five years later, he wrote an arrangement for wind ensemble. But the work became universally known and loved through Whitacre's Virtual Choir project in 2009. The video which mixed individual recordings by 185 singers from 12 countries caused a colossal rush when it was uploaded online in 2011 and has been watched on YouTube more than four million times since.
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