The Starlit Birth
December 11, 2009
The Starlit Birth, Cecilia’s annual salute to the Christmas season in two performances, features a revival of James Woodman’s A Midwife’s Tale, commissioned and first performed by Boston Cecilia in 1996. A Midwife’s Tale sets excerpts from the Arundel Manuscript, a collection of legends about the life of Christ which dates from the 8th century and earlier, in which Zachel, a midwife enlisted by Joseph to attend to Mary at the time of Christ’s birth, tells the story of her birthing experience. Complementing this work will be additional pieces by Woodman: his Magnificat and two recent Carols, as well as Carol settings by American colonial and European composers.