The latest thing in Advent calendars!

Rebecca Clarke is Day Four in La Boîte à Pépites de Noël, an absolutely fabulous Advent calendar of absolutely fabulous composers who happen to be female, and she gets—what else?—an absolutely lovely performance of her Combined Carols, for string quartet, a mashup of “God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen,” “Silent Night,” and “Adeste Fideles” that started life as a little family jape called Get ’em all over at once. Almost instantly, Clarke realized what a terrific number it was, and started shopping it around New York, which needed a little cheering up right then, because it was the dead of winter at the height of World War Two. She soon made a version for string orchestra, which became a holiday fixture on New York radio.

So since it’s the dead of whatever season you care to call this at the height of COVID, we thought we ought to rush this lovely thing right out to you, in addition to adding it to our Video page. The performance is by Quatuor Modigliani, and the smashing venue appears to be the Salon de thé at Le Château de Rosa Bonheur, up the river from Paris, and if that doesn’t improve your mood, then there’s no hope for you.

The facts in the introduction aren’t exquisitely correct (see our FAQ for the straight deal on Anthony Trent), but the animation is charming. I don’t know about you, but we can’t wait to see who they come up with after Imo, Violeta, and Mel, so we subscribed for the whole season. You could, too.

Merry Whateveryoucelebrate! And stay safe.

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