The Night of the Star
Composer: Mary Elizabeth Caldwell
Librettist: Mary Elizabeth Caldwell
Premiere Date: Not available.
Description: The night of Christ’s birth comes to life through the story of a young shepherd boy. When the Angel Gabriel announces the Christ Child's birth to the shepherds, young Jonathan is left behind with the flock while the older shepherds go to Bethlehem. A Little Angel appears: he was one of the cherubim who accompanied Gabriel, but has broken his wing and fallen to earth. The two youngsters manage to mend the wing, but when the Little Angel realizes his gift for the Christ Child was lost in his fall, Jonathan gives him his flute. The Little Angel departs, but forgets his golden halo; Jonathan keeps it, intending it as a gift for his older brother, one of the shepherds. A young girl and 2 children suddenly appear: they are being pursued by Roman soldiers, having escaped from a slave caravan Jonathan directs them to safety and gives them the halo to use as ransom. A soldier appears, and when Jonathan refuses to give him information, raises his sword; but at that moment, the Little Angel appears with thunder and lightning demanding the young shepherd boy's release, and the soldier flees. The older shepherds return and recount what they saw at the manger, and Jonathan learns that even though he was not there, his flute was delivered as a gift. The Little Angel appears to Jonathan in the heavens once more, and waves goodbye, as the angelic chorus sings "Gloria in excelsis Deo."
courtesy of Theodore Presser Company
Character List (Major): Jonathan(s); Benjamin(t); Jacob(bar); Nathan(b-bar); The Little Angel(s); Roman Soldier(bar); Slave Girl(mzo); Two Slave Children(boy & girl: silent roles); The Angel Gabriel(speaking role)
Reviews: Pasadena Star News, 12-6-65;
Length: 01:00
Total Acts: 1
Chorus: SSAA Chorus
Orchestration: "Large Orchestra:1(Picc.) 2(E.H.) 2 1 - 2 1 0 0; Timp. Perc. Cel. Hp. Str. Reduced Orchestra: Pno. Cel. Org. Hp. Timp. Perc"
Musical Style: tonal, tuneful, by turns dramatic and lighthearted
Contact: Theodore Presser Company
E-mail Address:
Phone: 610-592-1222
Publisher Web Site:
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