A French Christmas carol (noël) from the Languedoc region, both text and tune to Angels We Have Heard on High is believed to have been written sometime during the eighteenth century. Its tune, Gloria, was adapted in England in 1816 to use a different Christmas text, James Montgomery’s Angels from the Realms of Glory, before English Roman Catholic Bishop James Chadwick translated the French text Les Anges dans nos campagnes – literally Angels in our countryside – into English in 1862 giving back the original lyrics to the tune Gloria.
With all these angels from the realms running around the countryside, I thought it would be great to create Tidings of the Angels, a piano medley matching the tune Gloria (Angels We Have Heard on High) and the tune Regent Square (used in the United States for Angels from the Realms of Glory) with a third tune, Mendelssohn (Hark! the Herald Angels Sing.) I tried to capture some of the joy of both angels and shepherds (and all of us, really) at the glorious news of a newborn Savior. Enjoy!