It’s never too early to think about Christmas! In fact, I’m like Ebenezer Scrooge – I think about it year round.
How about adding a villancico by Francisco Guerrero to your choir’s repertoire this year? They’re not too long, generally within reach of most singers who can hold a part, and have some interesting syncopations in the middle to keep everyone awake. Many are 4-part, some are 3-part treble. Here’s a Spanish quartet in rehearsal. Lots to be found in the Choral Public Domain Library, so finances are no excuse.
And Guerrero’s life is worth telling – a choirmaster in Sevilla, he was kidnapped by pirates on his return from a Holy Land pilgrimage, landed in debtor’s prison after he was ransomed and returned to Spain, bailed out by the Cathedral in Sevilla which hired him back. Guerrero wrote a best-selling account of his adventures and died of the plague before he could undertake a second, planned pilgrimage. What a guy!