A Dawning Light — Daniel Carter

Daniel Carter’s Restoration cantata, “A Dawning Light” returns, now upgraded and better than ever. This cantata features 6 original songs following Joseph Smith’s First Vision and what he accomplished. The accompanying narration helps guide the congregation through the story. At an approximate 20-minute runtime, this cantata is short enough to fit within a sacrament meeting and also leave time at the end for closing remarks. It would be a perfect way to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the First Vision.

Melkim Publishing offers different options to purchase this cantata (or pieces of it) to fit your own needs and budget. Check out details below this simulated performance:


Click on the links below to purchase each option.

The full cantata comes in a 20-page 12″ x 9″ booklet. It’s the most expensive way to purchase the cantata, but you really only need it for the choir director, accompanist, and soloists. This includes the narration inside the booklet, but we will also provide a separate copy of the narration/script for free.

The choral excerpts are cheaper and are meant for the members of the choir. The booklets are smaller (10.5″ x 7″) and easier to hold. Both the full cantata and choral excerpts booklets contain rehearsal marks “A” through “I” to help coordinate locations during practice. In this way, a choir can save money by purchasing only a couple of copies of the full cantata booklet and several of the choral excerpts booklets. Note: the choral excerpts booklet does not contain the narration.

You can also download a free preview of the cantata.

If you are willing to download and print (or use electronic devices for performances), you may save even more money through our bulk $30 and $50 options. The Small Choir option ($30) provides the right to print/use up to 30 copies as needed, and the Large Choir option ($50) provides more copies for the choir. To access these options, go to either the full cantata or the choral excerpts and choose the Small or Large Choir options for download. You will then receive both the full cantata and choral excerpts files for printing.

In addition, you may purchase each piece of the cantata separately (starting in mid-January). In this way, you can choose individual pieces that fit your needs.

#1) “A Dawning Light” (Single piece — SATB): a general commemoration of what the First Vision offers to mankind.

#2) “If Any of You Lack Wisdom” (Mezzo soprano solo and SATB): an exploration of James 1:5 and using prayer to gain wisdom.

#3) “The Light of Love” (Male solo): the telling of the First Vision and what it means.

#4) “To Those with Pure Intent” (Hymn for SATB — currently available for free download): a hymn detailing the promises from Moroni 10:4-6 — how each of us can learn truth for ourselves.

#5) “The Priesthood Now Is Restored” (SATB): a lively celebration of the restoration of priesthood power in the latter days.

#6) “Love and Hope That Heal” (Solo): Explores the love that the restored gospel provides to us and how we can benefit the most from it.

#6a) “Love and Hope That Heal” (Bonus choral version that’s not in the cantata): Coming soon.

Performance Alternatives

The original intent is to have this performed with the provided narration in a special sacrament meeting. The difficulty ranges in the intermediate area and fits well with small-to-medium-sized ward choirs. However, other possibilities exist:

  • Swap out the narration with short talks between songs.
  • Perform in a fireside, or possibly a stake activity.
  • Have the 6 pieces spread out over six weeks with accompanying talks exploring each aspect of the First Vision.
  • Or perform just individual pieces as needed.

However you perform it, we hope you will consider and enjoy this cantata, and we hope it will find place and help to enhance your commemoration activities.