Jazz Nativity: The First Noel


SKU: JNFirstNoel Category:


This product is DOWNLOAD ONLY.  There are no physical copies to be shipped.  The purchaser can download the file and print as many copies as necessary for their local setting.

Jazz Nativity is a creative retelling (re-imagining) of the Christmas narrative through jazz and storytelling. Performed in a concert setting it can easily be adapted for use in worship. Each Jazz Nativity has been performed in church sanctuaries with the pastor as host, a guest storyteller to assist in highlighting the story, actors who portray various roles, and, of course, the band.

All Christmas music is notated in the script and arrangements can be found in our Worship in a New Key jazz hymnbook – volume 2. Additional carols and secular Christmas may be substituted and/or added.

At the core of Jazz Nativity is the gospel message of hope, peace, joy and love fulfilled in the birth of the Christ child. While Jazz Nativity is written to “re-imagine” the Christmas story dramatically and humorously, audiences have expressed their appreciation for experiencing the “old story” in a new way.

We hope you’ll like “O Little Town of Bethlehem” so much that you will also want to perform “The First Noel.” Stay-tuned for next Christmas when we’ll add two additional scripts. Our hope is that these interesting characters and classic jazz carols breath new life into your church’s Christmas season.


A quick glimpse at “The First Noel” – Sample script section

Storyteller: [Riffing on Luke 2] The angel scared the poor shepherds half-to-death. Calming them down he said, “Don’t be afraid. I’m here to announce a joyful event—Good News—the Messiah has been born. Go to Bethlehem and look for a baby wrapped in a blanket lying inside a manger.”

Then the entire sky lit up—more angels . . . a celestial choir singing “Glory to God in the heavenly heights. Peace to everyone, everywhere!”

[The band begins “Angels from the Realms of Gory.” Volume 2 has two versions: a traditional 4/4 melody and a syncopated version shifting between 4/4 and 6/8, then into 5/4 and ultimately 9/8 at the end. This second version allows for diverse antiphonal instrumentation or two vocalists singing back and forth]

Host: “Glory to God in the heavenly heights. Peace to everyone, everywhere!”

Story: And then . . . poof! The angels disappeared—gone—leaving the shepherds alone.

[Three loud bangs are heard . . . the knocking of a shepherd’s crook on the hard floor . . . a guy in a vest, jeans, boots, floppy hat and a scarf races down the aisle rapidly using his crook as a walking stick]

Story: [looking at his/her watch] Right on cue.

Shepherd: Sorry I’m late. [out of breath] I’m not used to all this traffic. It’s a zoo out there . . . so many people . . . never had to worry about those four-wheeled contraptions . . . give me a mule any day.

Story: [to the host] He’s all yours.

Host: [smiling] Welcome my friend. I’m so glad you’re here. I take it by your clothes that you’re a shepherd.


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