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Redner, Lewis Henry (15th December 1830-29th August 1908)

He was an organist and composer born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, whose playing the organ in church was a lifelong contribution, but due to the fact that doing that was not enough to provide for him economically, he also had a career in real estate in Philadelphia.

Spending 19 years at the Holy Trinity Church in Philadelphia as organist, he was instrumental in the expansion of the Sunday School program and he would also hold the same position in three other churches.

In 1868 the preacher Phillips Brooks, who he was an organist for, asked to put together some music for a poem he had written and wanted to include in the Sunday school Christmas service.  He did this literally in a matter of a few hours and after a dream he had had that night, the result would be the ever-popular Christmas carol “O Little Town of Bethlehem”.  Another carol they collaborated on is “Everywhere, Everywhere Christmas Tonight” which is not performed as regularly but still sung by various choirs and ensembles.

Leaving this legacy behind him he died at the Hotel Marlborough in Atlantic City when he was 77 years old.

O Little Town of Bethlehem recordings
Leroy Anderson & his Orchestra
Decca B0003552-02 (CD: A Leroy Anderson Christmas)

Chicago Symphony Low Brass Ensemble 
VOX 7501 (CD: Christmas with the Symphony Brass of Chicago)
Conductor – Barry Faldner

Choir of St. John’s, Cambridge
London 421 022 (CD: Christmas Weekend -16 Favourite Carols)

Placido Domingo
A Medley of Christmas Carols
(Joy to the World, God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen, Good King Wenceslas, O Little town of Bethlehem, The First Noel)
FM 37245 (CD: Christmas with Placido Domingo)
Orchestra – Vienna Symphony Orchestra
Conductor -Lee Holdridge

Paul Hill Chorale Recordings
 CRC 2258 (CD: A Paul Hill Chorale Christmas)
Conductor – Paul Hill
Organist – Sondra Proctor
National Capital Brass and Percussion Ensemble

Kiri te Kanawa 
TELDEC 99000 (CD: Christmas with Kiri te Kanawa) 
BBC Philharmonic Orchestra
Choir of Lichfield Cathedral
The Choir of Coventry Cathedral
Conductor – R. Stapleton
Vocals – Kiri te Kanawa

Kings College Choir, Cambridge 
London 444 848 (CD: Noel – Christmas at Kings)
Conductor – Sir David Willcocks

Robert Shaw Chorale 
RCA 6429 – 2 – RG (CD: A Festival of Carols)
(Arrangers – Robert Shaw/Alice Parker)

Everywhere, Everywhere Christmas Tonight recordings
Robert De Cormier Singers and Ensemble recordings
Carols Medley – Merry Christmas (Traditional)/Dame Get Up and Bake Your Pies (Traditional English)/Everywhere, Everywhere Christmas Tonight (Phillips Brooks/Lewis Henry Redner)
Arabesque 6526 (CD:  The First Nowell)
Arranger/ConductorRobert DeCormier
Organ/Piano – David Ralph