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Hymn Variants

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Alfred Reed

Alfred Reed

Subtitle: Based on Lasst Uns Erfreuen (1623)

General Info

Year: 1992
Duration: c. 11:40
Difficulty: IV (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: C.L. Barnhouse
Cost: Score and Parts – $120.00   |   Score Only – $9.00


1. Proclamation – 1:55
2. Adoration – 5:22
3. Exultation – 3:57


Full Score
C Flute I-II-III (III doubling C Piccolo)
Oboe I-II
English Horn
Bassoon I-II
E-flat Soprano Clarinet
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
E-flat Alto Clarinet
B-flat Bass Clarinet
B-flat Contrabass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone I-II
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Trumpets I-II-III
B-flat Cornet I-II
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombones I-II-III
String Bass
Percussion I-II-III, including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Bells
  • Chimes
  • Crash Cymbals
  • Gong
  • Snare Drum
  • Suspended Cymbal
  • Triangle
  • Vibraphone


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

The German chorale melody which has come down to us with its Latin title of "In Dulci Jubilo" (in English: "Now Let Us Sing With Joy") is at least 450 years old, and has existed in various forms in both the Protestant and Catholic hymnals, with various texts. But the dominant theme of all these texts is one of adoration and praise at the birth of Jesus Christ, thus making this "song of joy" a staple of the Christmas season in all countries throughout the world.

One of the earlier versions of this melody is that found in the "Geistliche Kirchengesang," ("Sacred Church Songs") published in 1623, where it bears the title "Lasst Uns Erfreuen" ("Let Us Be Joyful"), and it is this version that was taken by the composer as the basis for a set of variants, or variations, for wind orchestra, developing this ancient melody with all of the various tone colors, sonorities, and instrumental combinations to be found in the contemporary integrated wind group.

The music is in three movements, the first of which is titled Proclamation, representing the proclaiming of the good news of the birth of Christ throughout the world. The second, titled Adoration, depicts the hushed, breathless contemplation of the child newly born in the manger by the Three Kings and all the others who were guided to this spot by the star in the East. The third and final movement, Exultation, attempts to portray the rejoicing of the shepherds and angels singing their praise of God and the glory of the event that was to change the world, ending with the restatement of the original melody in all the power and majesty of the full ensemble.

Hymn Variants was commissioned for the combined national convention of Kappa Kappa Psi and Tau Beta Sigma in the summer of 1991. It was first performed on that occasion on July 31st of that year by the 1991 National Intercollegiate Band, under the direction of the composer, at the closing concert of the convention which took place at the University of Maryland (College Park, MD).

- Program Note from score


(Needed - please join the WRP if you can help.)

State Ratings

  • Alabama: Band Class A
  • Florida: V
  • Kansas: VI
  • North Carolina: VI
  • New York: V
  • Tennessee: V
  • Virginia: VI


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • Concordia University Wisconsin (Mequon) Symphonic Wind Ensemble (Louis Menchaca, conductor) - 22 April 2023

Works for Winds by This Composer

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