work details

I held a rose on Christmas Day

  • Instrumentation: for voice and keyboard
  • Completed: December 2020
  • Duration: 2 1/2 minutes
  • Texts: Original hymn text by the composer.
  • Commission and Dedication:

    Commissioned by the Mendelssohn Chorus of Philadelphia Board of Directors for the 2020 Holiday Fundraiser. Dedicated to and gifted in honor of Board Chair Charlotte E. Sibley, with admiration and gratitude for her visionary leadership, generosity, kindness, sharp wit, and warm humor.

  • Text:

    I held a rose on Christmas Day
    Original text by the composer.

    I held a rose on Christmas Day,
    Prickèd, precious, all white with thorn…
    What wonder does your blossom hold?

    I held a bird on Christmas Day,
    Fragile, freezing, not yet in flight…
    What story has your song foretold?

    I held a ring on Christmas Day,
    Prescient promise, new joy yet born…
    What oath and bond have you made gold?

    I held your heart on Christmas Day,
    Humble, wholesome, your warmth, your light…
    With ease, your love casts out the cold.

    Copyright © 2020 Dominick DiOrio. All rights reserved.

  • Performances:
    • Recorded virtually by Abigail Chapman, soprano, and Ting Ting Wong, piano.
      December 24, 2020.