Newborn Glimmer 2019

by Matthew Peterson



När juldagsmorgon glimmar, jag vill till stallet gå. Guds son i nattens timmar re'n vilar uppå strå.

"When Christmas morning glimmers I want to go to the stable. God's son, in the night hours, already rests upon the straw." [translation by the composer]

Newborn Glimmer is an orchestral fantasy on the Swedish hymn "När juldagsmorgon glimmar," sung in English as "When Christmas Morn is Dawning." I like the simple directness of the original Swedish text, and its juxtaposition of dawn and night: Christ arrives in the darkness before the light, in the form of a baby in a manger, lying on straw.

I began composing this piece in the middle of winter in my home in Dalarna, Sweden, where the nights are very long and the weather is snowy and cold. This piece is a lullaby sung in the cold darkness, as we wait for the light of morning.


Newborn Glimmer was composed by a consortium of orchestras. I would like to thank Steven Amundson and the St. Olaf Orchestra, Dr. Foster Beyers and James Madison University, and Jesus Rocha, Aaron Hufty, and the members of First Baptist Church San Antonio for supporting this project and helping to bring new orchestra music into the world. 

Premiere performance

courtesy of St. Olaf College

used with permission

Conductor Score


Tempo Music Resource

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