Picks and Pans Review: Carols for Christmas

updated 12/05/1988 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 12/05/1988 AT 01:00 AM EST

Sick of those off-key neighborhood carolers? Ignore the doorbell and settle down to watch this lovingly produced one-hour concert by London's Royal College of Music Chamber Choir. A montage of works from New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art is shown as the carols are sung, bringing artists from El Greco to Mary Cassatt in on the act. An enclosed booklet provides some basic information about each art work, which is first pictured as a whole, then examined in detail. Away in a Manger features three Madonna-and-child paintings by different artists, and We Wish You a Merry Christmas is illustrated with six Currier and Ives lithographs. The art inevitably loses some of its immediacy in the transfer to video, but there is certainly something to be said for carols on tape: The singers don't shiver, and they won't ask for eggnog when they're done. (Home Vision, $39.95; 800-262-8600)

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