What is the course about?
This online course offers a short cultural history of the service of nine lessons and carols with a strong focus on the annual BBC broadcasts from King’s College, Cambridge. During the course we also study nine carols typically associated with the service beginning with Boris Ord’s setting of ‘Adam lay ybounden’.
This is a live online course. You will need:
- Internet connection. The classes work best with Chrome.
- A computer with microphone and camera is best (e.g. a PC/laptop/iMac/MacBook), or a tablet/iPad/smart phone/iPhone if you don't have a computer.
We will contact you with joining instructions before your course starts.
What will we cover?
- The origins of the Nine lessons and carols service
- The liturgical form of the service
- Broadcasting, including wartime broadcasts, from Cambridge
- What makes a carol a ‘Christmas Carol’
- Technical language of carols: burden, refrain etc…
- Examples of Christmas carols in manuscript and performance.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
- understand the history and format of this service
- recognise key forms of Christmas carols (including ‘traditional’ examples)
- feel confident using some technical language to describe carols
- read lyrics and recognise several common themes.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
This course is suitable for absolute beginners. However, we will look at some music manuscripts and learn to identify key features of music notation (how many voices are singing, etc…) so this course will be most suitable for those who are curious and ambitious to learn.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
This is an online course:
Sessions will be held via video-conference (google meets) and comprise combinations of lecture, discussion, quizzes, guided listening, video and score study. Course materials (handouts, scores, links to online videos) will be shared via google classroom.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
PowerPoint slides and reading list provided digitally for this session. You may also wish to purchase some of the music books or recordings discussed in class, for further reading and study: links to these materials will be available online after the session.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
To find out more about music history classes Music history courses in London and online which lists our full programme of classes ordered by term, and by day of the week. You may then click on each title to read the full course outline.