Different interpretations of the same melody:
song - Tanya Tsikhotska - Shchedryk (Ukr) mp3
Kiev Chamber Choir - Ukrainian Christmas - Shchedryk (Generosity) (Ukr) mp3
Columbia Boys Choir - Ukrainian Bell Carol (Eng) mp3
Acapella - Carol of the Bells (Eng) mp3
Vienna Boys Choir - Ukrainian Bell Carol (Eng) mp3
Choir Irkutsk University - Shchedryk (Ukr) mp3
Boston Pops - Carol of the Bells (Eng) mp3
Kammerchor Michaelstein - Germany - Shchedryk (Ukr) New mp3
Mormon Youth Chorus and Symphony - Carol of the Bells mp3
Brian Harris - Ukrainian Bell Carol mp3
Mitya Kuznetsov - Shchedryk (Ukr) mp3
guitar - Shchedryk mid
Mannheim Steamroller - Carol of the Bells (Ukrainian) - A Fresh Air Christmas mp3
Assia Akhat (violin) - Shchedryk - Paraphrase - arr. S.Krutsenko mp3
  Ukrainian Bell Carol  
 

 

based on Ukrainian folk song,
composed for choir by Mykola Leontovych with a title “Shchedryk”
adapted by Peter J. Wilhousky as a "Carol of the Bells"

History

M. Leontovych The melody was created in 1916 by Ukrainian composer Mykola Leontovych (1877-1921) and titled "Shchedryk". Based on an old Ukrainian folk song, the original lyrics describes the swallow flying into a household to proclaim the plentiful year that the family will have. The song's title is derived from the Ukrainian word "shchedryi" which means "bountiful." The swallow is a herald of spring coming, possibly of pre-Christian origins. The folk melody was sung in many Ukrainian villages on Jan. 13 – New Year's Eve on the Julian calendar – usually by adolescent girls going house to house in celebration of the new year.

 
 

   The choral work Shchedryk was first performed by students at Kiev University in December 1916. When American choir director and arranger Peter Wilhousky (1902-1978) heard Leontovich's choral work, it reminded him of bells; so he wrote new lyrics to convey that imagery for his choir. He published the new lyrics in 1936. Of Czech background, Wilhousky grew up singing in Russian-American choirs and made many translations and arrangements of Slavic music. The title chosen by him "Carol of the Bells" was harmonious with the old Slavic legend that at midnight the evening Jesus was born all the bells on earth started to sound of their own accord in his honor. Since then the song has become a popular Christmas tune especially in the US and Canada where it is also known as "Ukrainian Carol".

 
 

Shchedryk (ukr)
Carol of the Bells (eng)

 
19-Dec-2006