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Updated October 14, 2017

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WonderLight (Wonder Cantata)

Listen to "WonderLight"

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About "WonderLight"

The Wonder Cantata was composed in 2011 and performed by the Chancel Choir, Fauntleroy Church UCC at the choir's Christmas concert. The lyrics for the Cantata were developed by composer Bronwyn Edwards (Music Director at Fauntleroy Church) after a conversation about the wonder of Christmas with the then-Senior Pastor at Fauntleroy Church, Reverend David Kratz and chorister Greg Dirks.

Following are Reverend Kratz's reflections, which inspired the eighth song of the Cantata, entitled "WonderLight."

There is something inspiring and wonderful about light. In Christmas Eve worship, that moment of quiet after we sing Silent Night and hold the candle, there's no other light but the illumination of the candles. That is a wonderful thing. Wonder eludes description. It eludes definition. Standing in the back of the sanctuary is a breathtaking experience. Light is a symbol for wonder, found in the star of wonder, star of light. Wonder is a part of this "opening up," of illuminating life in a different way that doesn't make rational sense, but does make life worth living. That's what finding God or being found by God is all about.

These reflections were part of the performance, helping the listener to better understand the concepts behind the music.

WonderLight features a layered, shimmering Soprano/Alto chorus describing the beauty and hope of candle light at Christmas. Add the traditional melody of Franz Gruber in the Tenor/Bass sections and two soaring soprano solos in a dramatic and surprising interlude. The song concludes with more shimmering light and the "Silent Night" carol layered beneath.  The harmonies of the mid-section are challenging, but my church choir got it right with a little help from recorded parts and plenty of practice. I also think that singing this section by ear is less confusing than trying to follow the enharmonic accidentals on the score. If you would like access to my recorded parts, please contact me by email and write "recorded parts" in the subject line.

For SSAATBB, piano and 2 soprano soloists
Music and lyrics by Bronwyn Edwards


1. The Wonder
2. Unexpected, Unpredictable
3. The Promise
4. The Power
5. Home / inc. O Come All Ye Faithful
6. The Wonderful Story
7. Wonderful Counselor
8. WonderLight
9. The Gift
10. Finale: Home, a Place of Wonder / inc. O Come, All Ye Faithful


by Bronwyn Edwards

Sopranos / Altos:
Light. Pure. Glowing illumination of Wonder.
Light. Pure. Warm. Radiant symbol of Christmas Wonder.
God-ray. Soul-glow. Star-light. Hope-flame.

Light. Pure breath-taking moment born in this place of Wonder.
Light. Pure. Candle of hope, glowing in Christmas Wonder.
God-ray. Soul-glow. Star-light. Hope-flame.

Soprano soloists sing double descant above choir.

All who know God, praise God's Holy Name.

Sopranos / Altos:
Light. Pure. Glowing illumination of Wonder.
Light. Pure. Warm. Radiant symbol of Christmas Wonder.
God-ray. Soul-glow. Star-light. Hope-flame.

Tenors / Basses:
(Lyrics by Joseph Mohr, Melody by Franz Xaver Gruber)

Silent night, Holy night, all is calm, all is bright.
Round yon virgin, mother and child, Holy Infant so tender and mild.
Sleep in heavenly peace, sleep in heavenly peace.

Available at as printed copies or digital download.

Partial download: "WonderLight"
(cover + 8 pages)
in PDF format

Comments: is a catalogue of original music and arrangements by composer Bronwyn Edwards, with links to online sheet music sales at and
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