HOLIDAY ORCHESTRA WORKS by matthew peterson

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Dawn: Redeeming, Radiant (2012)

duration circa 4:30

"Dawn: Redeeming, Radiant" by composer Matthew Peterson opens the 2018 St. Olaf Christmas Festival in Northfield, Minnesota. Performed by the St. Olaf Orchestra, conductor Steven Amundson. Video courtesy of St. Olaf College. Used by Permission.


duration circa 6:00

Dawn: Redeeming, Radiant

a musical dawn based on “Silent Night”

"Silent night, holy night
Son of God, love's pure light
Radiant beams from thy holy face,
with the dawn of redeeming grace..."

-Silent Night, Joseph Mohr (1816)

Dawn: Redeeming, Radiant, was commissioned by St. Olaf College to open the 2012 St. Olaf Christmas Festival. A musical dawn, the piece awakens the service from silence.

"Silent Night" provides the musical foundation for the piece. The hymn's melody is condensed to form the luminous falling line that opens and closes the work. The hymn's final melodic phrase - "sleep in heavenly peace" - is layered in a canon which rings forth in the pitched percussion and harp before being sung throughout the orchestra in a shining crescendo.

Performed by the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Colorado Springs Symphony, Concordia College, Columbus Symphony, Grand Rapids Symphony, Goshen College, Maryland Symphony, Northern Symphony, and many others.

Corde Natus

an orchestral fantasy on an ancient hymn

"Of the parent's heart begotten,
Ere the world began to be,
He is Alpha and Omega, the source and the ending
Of the things that are, that have been,
and that the future shall bring.
Evermore and evermore."

-Aurelius Prudentius, from Liber Cathemerinom

Corde Natus was commissioned by St. Olaf College to open the 2014 St. Olaf Christmas Festival. A prelude for orchestra, Corde Natus is a musical meditation on the ancient Latin poem "Corde natus" and the medieval plainchant melody "Divinum Mysterium." These two works combine in the well-known Christmas hymn, "Of the Father's Love Begotten."

"Corde Natus," translated directly, means "of the heart" or "heart born."

Recently featured on the St. Olaf Christmas Festival