The Boy Who Hated Christmas by Robert Nelson/story by Kate Pogue
Chicago Chamber Brass commissioned “The Boy Who Hated Christmas” in 1988. The work narrates an original story by Kate Pogue, set to Robert Nelson’s musical score of original episodes and traditional Christmastime music, in a colorful and brilliant orchestration that features two trumpets, horn, trombone, and tuba. It was an effective showcase for the versatile talents of the five members of Chicago Chamber Brass, who shared the narration of the intriguing and fanciful story. It has been reset by Dr. Nelson to include a separate part for narrator, with the five brass players retaining their prominence as a concerted group of soloists. The story concerns the adventures of a rather angry, self-centered young boy named Hugh who is never satisfied with his Christmas presents. On a visit to the local toy store with his mother and siblings, Hugh becomes enchanted by a large rocket ship called “The Miraculous Time and Space Machine.” Hugh hides in the store after closing time and plans to wreak the vengeance of his anger on the toys. Much to Hugh’s surprise, the toys come to life and begin to defend themselves. Pursued by threatening toys, Hugh hides in “The Miraculous Time and Space Machine,” where he is transported to a strange land just in time to witness “The Night of the Holy Fire.” Here Hugh learns the true meaning of giving: “The gift will always disappear, but that which lasts forever is the love God bears for us and we for one another, and the goodwill of the one who gives.” To emphasize the meaning of this statement, the people of this strange land bring gifts to offer to the Christ child. Hugh becomes a hero with the simple gift of his flashlight, and he experiences the joy of giving through “The Night of the Holy Fire,” when all of the gifts are ignited to show that love is the real meaning of giving and the only thing that is lasting. In the midst of all this Hugh realizes how much he misses his family and his home. He reenters “The Miraculous Time and Space Machine,” reaches for the throttle for the ride home, and the next thing he remembers is being awakened in the toy store by his mother and going home to the best and happiest Christmas of his life.
The parts are printed on symphonic quality 9×12 inch paper and the score is a a beautifully spiral bound 11×14 inch document.
Traditional Christmas music includes:
O Come Little Children
Ring Christmas Bells
O Come all Ye Faithful
Teddy Bears’ Picnic
March of the Toy Soldiers
March of the Toys
O Come all ye Faithful
Good Christian Men Rejoice
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