Two Noels by Charpentier for String Quartet

Two Noels by Charpentier for String Quartet – These two works by M.A Charpentier are featured on the first disc of string quartet Christmas carols by the Manor House String Quartet, entitled ‘I Saw Three Ships and other carols’. You can hear a sample of it (arranged by violinist Vaughan Jones) by clicking on the link. They are twinned on our disc and were originally written for organ, intended to be performed as part of Midnight Mass (messe de minuit). These two carols are unique on the disc because they were direct transcriptions from Charpentier’s original work and very little was done to them apart from some ornamentation to add a little variety and suit the stringed instruments. Both pieces have tremendous charm and show what a wonderful writer of melodies the composer was.

The first piece is called ‘Joseph est Bien Marie’ – which means ‘Joseph is Well Married’ and the second piece is entitled ‘Laissez Paitres vos Bestes’ which translates as ‘Let Your Beasts Graze’. We will be playing both these pieces in our forthcoming string quartet Christmas concerts as they have such an early baroque feel and this will add contrast to other items included in the programme.

You can also purchase the sheet music of Vaughan’s arrangements for the combinations of string quartet and string orchestra here:

Joseph est Bien Marie – Music Score

Laissez Paitre vos Betes – Music Score