Click to enlargeJoy to the World (brass quartet)

This G. F. Handel tune has always been a natural for brass groups. Of all the "Christmas Music" in circulation, none better expresses the hope and joy found in the message of a baby born to save the world from the curse under which it had labored since just after the dawn of mankind.

If this arrangement were just a rehashing of the harmonizations of this hymn tune that have been found in hymnals for the past two centuries, there would scarcely have been need to write it down. Rather, this is an attempt to bring something new to the old hymn tune, to do something that the listener may not exactly expect, but that will bring a smile to the face.

The four parts are quite playable for good high school musicians, though it may be difficult at times to scare up a bass trombonist. Feel free to substitute a tuba or just take those pesky low e-flats up an octave on a tenor trombone. If there is no bass trombonist available, the tuba is a better musical choice, but either path will suffice. The arranger is both a bass trombonist and tubist, and so has left the door wide open for either instrument.

So, give a Christmas-time audience a little treat this year-- a new arrangement of an old standard, Handel's "Joy to the World."

MP3 sound sample: Entire piece (synthesizer/midi).



JOY TO THE WORLD for brass quartet (two trumpets, tenor trombone, and bass trombone or tuba), arranged by Tom Kirkland, comes in a PDF file of 1568K that contains a four page score, four parts of two pages each, and a license page, thirteen pages in all. Performance time should be around 2:50.


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Last update: 5 June 2017