St. Luke’s United Methodist Church presents world premiere of Christmas Cantata by world-renowned composer Howard Goodall Dec. 15

Choirs of St. Luke’s will be featured

St. Luke’s United Methodist Church welcomes award-winning and world-renowned British composer Howard Goodall again this year as he conducts the world premiere of his Christmas Cantata with the choirs of St. Luke’s.

WHAT: St. Luke’s United Methodist Church (St. Luke’s UMC) welcomes award-winning and world-renowned British composer Howard Goodall again this year as he conducts the world premiere of his Christmas Cantata. This seven-movement work was specially created by the composer for the choirs of St. Luke’s UMC as part of the church’s 2019 Christmas Festival. This piece is written for soprano solo, children’s choir, SATB (soprano, alto, tenor, bass) choir, organ, and chamber orchestra and will be performed in its entirety throughout each of the three services in the sanctuary on December 15. The Christmas Festival is made possible by the generosity of St. Luke’s Friends of Music.

WHO: Howard Goodall is one of Britain’s best-known composers of choral music, stage musicals, TV and film scores. He is also a distinguished music historian and broadcaster. His choral music has been commissioned to mark many national ceremonies and memorials; his settings of Psalm 23 and Love Divine are among the most performed of all sacred music, featured on several platinum-selling CDs. Eternal Light: A Requiem has had more than 550 live performances throughout the world since its première in 2008 and won him a Classical BRIT Award for Composer of the Year. His 2009 Enchanted Voices, a setting of the Beatitudes, won a Gramophone award.

Goodall’s first West End musical, The Hired Man, opened in 1984 and has since been performed all over the world, winning many international awards. Other West End musicals include Girlfriends, The Kissing-Dancethe dreamingLove Story and Bend it Like Beckham, which is touring India, the United States and Canada in 2019-20. He has composed some of the best-known British TV theme tunes of the last 40 years. The animated Mr. Bean series is the world’s most-followed entertainment product, with more than 80 million Facebook followers and 10 million YouTube subscribers. He won a Primetime Emmy in 2011 for Original Dramatic Score for the HBO film Into the Storm.

WHEN: Sunday, Dec. 15 at the following services: 8:30 a.m., 9:45 a.m., 11 a.m.

WHERE: St. Luke’s United Methodist Church, 3471 Westheimer Rd, Houston, 77027; In the Main Sanctuary

TARIFF: Free and open to the public

MORE:  Howard Goodall’s Invictus: A Passion received its world premiere at St. Luke’s UMC on March 25, 2018 (Palm Sunday), conducted by the composer. The work is a contemporary reflection on the themes of the traditional Christian Passion story with particular attention to the role and perspective of women. The 55-minute, nine-movement work was scored for soprano solo, tenor solo, SATB choir and an unusually configured chamber orchestra of double (antiphonal) string quartet, bass, piano, horns and soprano saxophone. Invictus: A Passion was also commissioned by St. Luke’s Friends of Music for the Chancel Choir of St Luke’s UMC, under the direction of Sid Davis, Director of Music and Fine Arts and a close friend and colleague of Goodall.

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About the Friends of Music of St. Luke’s Methodist Church

Friends of Music is a group of generous individuals who help make beautiful music happen weekly at St. Luke’s United Methodist Church, in addition to bringing in outstanding world-class ensembles, including Conspirare, for the enjoyment of the congregation and the broader community. Other programs supported by Friends of Music include orchestras for the Christmas Festival; brass for Easter services; solo instrumentalists throughout the year and special vocal soloists such as Ken Medema, Cynthia Wilson and Nate Lucena.