Otto Valdemar Malling (1 June 1848 – 5 October 1915) was a Danish composer, from 1900 the cathedral organist in Copenhagen and from 1889 professor, then from 1899 Director of the Royal Danish Academy of Music, Copenhagen. He was born in Copenhagen, and became a pupil of Niels Gade and Johan Peter Emilius Hartmann. in his later career he mainly composed organ works and vocal music, but he also wrote a significant amount of orchestral music, as well a substantial cantata "Der hellige Land", and a symphony in D minor. He was a co-founder and vice-conductor of The Concert Society, Copenhagen (1874), supporting himself as organist at various Copenhagen churches. His scores of organ music brought Malling some reputation abroad, but after his death he was soon forgotten in his native country.
"Die heiligen drei Könige" (The Three Holy Kings) was published by William Hansen in 1907. It tells the complete story of the Epiphany, beginning with Christmas night and ending with the Three Kings journeying back to their homes.
All the dramatic scenes and events are covered in these seven movements, and I think all are well worth the listen.
The 4th movement is actually taken from another "liturgical suite" by Malling, "Die Geburt Christi, Op. 48." It is a march over pulsing notes, and it's steady progress moves along with the action as the Kings approach Bethlehem.
Suddenly the chorale, "How brightly shines the Morning-Star" appears, guiding the Kings and letting them (and us) know that the journey is almost completes.
The action slowly subsides, and the dynamics also quiet steadily down until all movement melts away and the music settles down to the hushed ending. The Kings have arrived at the manger.
I hope you make the entire journey with me over the course of the next few days!
I felt the Armley Schultze was an excellent match for the music, and the all movements are recorded with it.
The score is attached below, as well as three photos of Otto Malling.