5:00 | SATB (SSAATB) | Request Score

Program Note

We Three Kings is a traditional Christmas Carol telling the story of three Magi who followed a star to Bethlehem, leading them to the infant Jesus. This arrangement, commissioned by Jonathan Bautista and dedicated to Nova Vocal Ensemble, features a modern reharmonization and an original motive (introduced in the tenors’ first three notes) that is woven throughout the entire piece. Each choir part is featured throughout the arrangement, with verses being sung by sopranos, altos, and tenors. The original motive is passed between the parts in a contrapuntal texture, making this a good arrangement for any choir looking for fun interplay and hocket-like textures.

This arrangement would fit well in any holiday-themed concert, Festival of Lessons and Carols, or sacred Christmas and/or Epiphany service.

Text

VERSE 1

We three kings of Orient are;
bearing gifts we traverse afar-
Field and fountain, moor and mountain-
following yonder star.

 

CHORUS

Star of wonder, star of night,
star with royal beauty bright,
westward leading, still proceeding,
guide us to thy perfect light.

 

VERSE 2

Born a king on Bethlehem’s plain;
Gold I bring to crown him again,
King forever, ceasing never
over us all to reign.

 

VERSE 3

Frankincense to offer have I;
Incense own a deity nigh.
Prayer and praising all men raising,
worship Him, God on high.

 

VERSE 4

Myrrh is mine: its bitter perfume
breathes a life of gathering gloom-
sorrowing, sighing, bleeding, dying,
sealed in the stone-cold tomb.

 

VERSE 5

We three kings of Orient are;
bearing gifts we traverse afar-
field and fountain, moor and mountain-
following yonder star.