A Gift of Music

"Don't make plans for Saturday night," he said.

"What shall I wear?" replied I.

"I'm going to wear a suit and tie," said he.

So I gussied up in a wine-coloured dress, a velvet jacket, my pearls with the addition of a brooch (as suggested by Duchess), crystal earrings and a gold and silver bag. The poor picture above was taken in the late afternoon, so it doesn't show off my sartorial efforts too well.

We went out for a casual dinner, then to the Royal Theatre downtown to hear the Victoria Symphony's "Sentimental Christmas" concert.  Such a lovely surprise date planned by Tim.

The first half of the evening consisted of sentimental Christmas tunes from the 20th century - White Christmas, Winter Wonderland, etc. which were enjoyable and had the audience tapping their toes and/or swaying in their seats, especially during the numbers accompanied by the the vocal talent of the College of Performing Arts students. 

While I enjoyed the tunes, the music that has echoed in my mind and heart since then are three pieces - the haunting loveliness of Greensleeves (What Child is This?), the joyful precision of Bach's Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring, and the forceful energy of Bizet's La Farandole (from the L'Arl├ęsienne Suite.) Music is such a gift.

What are your favorite Christmas pieces? Popular, classical, carols?



  1. What a wonderful treat! There have been delicious musical offerings at the Royal this season. I was at South Pacific at the end of November and noticed the same toe-tapping and swaying in seats.
    My favourite Christmas songs and carols? Oh Come Emmanuel is certainly one.

  2. How lovely to have such a surprise - so glad you enjoyed it. My favourite Christmas pieces are carols rather than the popular tunes which are played ad nauseum in the shops here at this time of year!

  3. What a lovely surprise for you, and you had some beautiful music to listen to .

  4. How exciting to have such a Christmas surprise from your thoughtful hubby! Sounds like a delightful evening!

    I love Christmas carols, "Angels From the Realms of Glory" being one of my favorites. Its verses contain the entire Christmas story and the melody is gorgeous. He who sang Creation's story now proclaims Messiah's birth!

    As for classical, can there be anything lovelier than Handel's Messiah? Or more stirring?

  5. You have a thoughtful husband to plan such a lovely evening for both of you. I enjoy some of the old standards (White Christmas and such) but the carols are the most Christmas-y. A single guitar and a beautiful voice singing "Silent Night" is wonderful.

  6. I love it all! When I was a concert-going gal, back in my more wealthy days, I always looked forward to Handel's Messiah. There's nothing quite so majestic for me. Has anyone told you lately that your husband is a dear? He is.

  7. What a lovely outing...and a treat to get all gussied up! I love a smattering of any and all Christmas-themed music, but my most favourites are the carols and classical pieces from Messiah and Bach's Christmas Oratorio. Greensleeves and Jesu would also be up near the topic.


  8. He's adorable...and how thoughtful of him to plan this. Sounds like a wonderful date night.


  9. That sounds like a wonderful evening!


  10. What a sweet date, perfect for this time of year. As for favourite Christmas music, I really love the old Advent carols -- O Come Divine Messiah is one favourite and another would be O Come O Come Emmanuel. . . and O Holy Night rings in my mind's ear through my father's beautiful tenor voice. . .

  11. Ooohh, I would like that!

  12. Fun! I like the traditional Christmas carols, especially O Come O Come Emanuel. I usually listen through Handel's Messiah once each year too.

  13. First - what an exceptionally wonderful surprise evening out. I have to say - my favorite christmas song is what I am listening to at any one moment - I love them all - jazzy and fun, classical, spiritual, new - any christmas song will do - we listen to a lot of different ones during the holidays.

  14. What a wonderful surprise! I enjoy it all. I love the hymns, the contemporary and the classics. I hope you are having a wonderful week. Hugs! Bonnie

  15. I read a poem a couple of months back describing a night from days gone by and how the family gathered in one of the homes for music on occasion. And it hit me then. Oh my goodness, almost stopped me in my tracks what a gift music is. We now can turn it on, off, switch to a favorite, turn it up, turn it down, repeat it at our will but years back?? It would have been far between the times when they could enjoy music and certainly not at their whims. It seems to me that musicians and their talent are under appreciated. (I have no talent in that area! Just can tinkle the ivories only the slightest)

  16. My last two posts are about Christmas songs and the recitations I wrote to go with them for our church's cantata.


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