Christmas Music for Violin
My mother-in-law used to play violin; she's in her 80's now and no longer plays. So, I enjoy playing Christmas music for her each year.
I took up the violin a while ago, after a long period of not playing. At this point, my technique probably fits into a mid to lower intermediate category. (Definitely beyond beginner.)
To my query, I'm interested in recommendations for Christmas music for solo violin at my level of playing. I'm probably looking for a book with multiple selections, versus individual sheet music. Whatever I purchase may or may not come with piano accompaniment. I'll be playing solo though, so if with accompaniment, the violin part will need to stand on its own.
Suggestions will be much appreciated.
I am Jewish so not an expert on X-mas music. However, a quick search turned up this possibility:
Here is some stuff with double stops (and without), maybe something appropriate for you
Good on you for giving her this wonderful gift - the music she loves and even more you there playing it for her.
Here is a bunch of X-mas music on IMSLP. If you scroll down almost to the end, you will find the violin part. This should take care of it:
Here is another album of Christmas songs suitable for first-position violin playing.
If you or she has a hymnal, then you can just play the top line of the treble clef. Looking up songs with google image search and screen shot-ing is another way to go.
I second the recommendation for Yasuda arrangements. The double stops add some interest and they're not too hard.
Thank you for the responses; they're good source material. I will follow up on all of these.
@Tom Holzman- being Jewish more likely makes you an expert in Christmas music!
@Tom Bop - I know all about the Jews who wrote X-mas songs, and I have some exposure to these songs from having grown up mostly in Boston. However, I still would not claim much expertise.
The New Shorter Oxford Book of Carols is a wonderful resource for both composed and traditional carols. Comes in a paperback edition designed for performance (voice & instruments), with excellent notes & scholarly introduction. This is my go-to book at Christmas time. No Hollywood or pop music to be found there, however.
I, too, use the hymnal approach. Being mindful of the audience is crucial. Many Christians find offensive seasonal songs with no mention of what they are actually celebrating. White Christmas, for example is mainly a celebration of snow.
"White Christmas, for example is mainly a celebration of snow."
Just a word of caution about playing out of the hymnal. Very often those arrangements are not in friendly keys for beginners.
White Christmas is about traditions, happy nostalgia, connecting, and hoping your days are merry and bright. Blankets of snow early in season make everything very pretty and new and fresh. There is a song in the movie White Christmas called 'Snow,' though. Just about all of Irving Berlin's songs are great, along with his other tin pan alley cohort. Great era!
Où sont les Noëls blancs d'antan?
You have to be SOOO careful these days! I'm dreaming of a pagan Winterval.
Gordon, was this an oblique reference to Kurt Weill's 'Nannas Lied'? It was a Christmas present from Weill to Lotte Lenya, and is one of the world's saddest songs, both Weill's music and Brecht's lyric.
If you mean 'ou sont', Richard, no, it's Francois Villon
Thanks Gordon, I didn’t know the François Villon poem, nor that Brecht had used him for some other borrowings.
i was told about that François Villon poem in which he was anticipating needing to use a Kreddle.