Arrangements by Brad Holmes have been performed by colleges, high schools and churches throughout the United States. His unique approach to Early American music has led to a series of arrangements specifically in this style, which have been performed by All State choirs and at national festivals. His most popular arrangement, Noel, has received performances across the country and internationally. While many of Dr. Holmes’ arrangements are for the a cappella choir, his published works do also include some with piano and orchestral accompaniment.
Published compositions are available for purchase on this page or directly from the specified publishers. Contact Dr. Holmes if you are interested in commissioning a composition for your choir.
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Lift Your Voice in Praise and Thanksgiving
A terrific Handelian chorus without the usual melismas. The original text has been adjusted in order that the piece may stand on its own. A short keyboard introduction is added to the original.
Lift Your Voice in Praise and Thanksgiving (Score)
A terrific Handelian chorus without the usual melismas. The original text has been adjusted in order that the piece may stand on its own. This version is accompanied by a small orchestral ensemble.
His best-selling arrangement, “Noel,” is a communal song of celebration in the Katuba dialect. Noel has been performed by All-State choirs and festival choruses across the country. This is the SATB version; a TTBB version is also available.
His best-selling arrangement, “Noel,” is a communal song of celebration in the Katuba dialect. Noel has been performed by All-State choirs and festival choruses across the country. This is the TTBB version; an SATB version is also available.
O Beata Trinitas
Written by Jacob Handl in the Venitian style with antiphonal effects, the piece requires a certain number of TB voices but is not otherwise difficult. A great piece for festival men’s choirs.
This skipping 6/8 Shaker melody is found in historical sources without text. Holmes has provided syllables which may be altered as a choir envisions what kind of event this tune might have enhanced (work song? barn dance?). The playful melody affords opportunities for mild staging with solo ‘characters’. A great novelty piece or encore.
Swell the Full Chorus
A return to the original text removes this chorus from the oversize-pool of ‘sacred’ Handel choruses. Though the piece has graced many worship settings (with altered text), the original was actually written as an exaltation of the human King Solomon. Melismas are at a minimum though the basses have one extended line to navigate.
Verbum Caro Factum Est
Hans Leo Hassler’s triumphant motet is re-voiced, creating a baritone part from what was two equal-voiced tenor lines. Antiphonal presentations of this “Venitian” motet make for an effective concert opening.
The Early American Collection
From his Early American collection, Brad Holmes minimally arranges this hymn by William Walker with text by Charles Wesley.
Now Shall My Inward Joys Arise
The Early American hymn tune, Africa, by William Billings is arranged for mixed chorus divisi. This arrangement was used recently as a processional for the Millikin University Choir.
Star In The East
An Early American hymn found in Southern Harmony. Its vibrant joy has made it a favorite seasonal selection for a broad range of ensembles from church choirs to All State choruses.
This Early American Hymn by Daniel Read is minimally arranged for SATB divsi choir. Bright, Triumphant and straightforward.
Music from outside publishers
In addition to the sheet music available through this site, the following pieces are available for purchase directly from their respective publishers.
And the Heart Replies
“There is in souls a sympathy with sounds” is the text of the dramatic opening. Soaring melodies prevail in this impassioned, lively piece with text by William Cowper. A great concert opener or closer, this is superb for the large choir. Published by Santa Barbara Music Publishing, available through JW Pepper.
Shape note music comes to life with the SATB choir divided into three choirs to lend a dramatic, antiphonal effect to this arrangement. At times all singers are involved, or only one of the three choirs, or a combination of two. The voicings: Choir I: SSA; Choir 2: SAT; Choir 3: A/T TB. Available from Santa Barbara Music Publishing.
O Sing Jubilee To The Lord
Written for the Norsemen choir from Luther College and performed on the 2012 ACDA National Conference. O Sing Jubilee is a festive setting of the tune GUDS MENIGHED, SYNG that may serve both concert or worship. For the advanced male chorus. Published by Morning Star Music Publishing, available through JW Pepper.
University Choir and Vespers on CD
Recordings from various years of the University Choir and the annual Vespers at Millikin are available from First Step Records or on iTunes.