My favorite Christmas choral piece
I think the setting of O Magnum Mysterium by Morten Lauridsen (a Washington native!) is one of the most beautiful pieces I’ve heard. Even though I’m an instrumentalist, I admit that there are few things I find more moving than a beautifully tuned choir.
I like the above version for the visuals, though my favorite renditions are by the Chamber Choir of Europe and the Nordic Chamber Choir:
O magnum mysterium,
et admirabile sacramentum,
ut animalia viderent Dominum natum,
jacentem in praesepio!
Beata Virgo, cujus viscera
O great mystery,
and wonderful sacrament,
that animals should see the new-born Lord,
lying in a manger!
Blessed is the Virgin whose womb
was worthy to bear
Christ the Lord.