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Carol of the Bells (arr Flowers)

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Mykola Leontovych

Mykola Leontovych (arr. Victor Flowers)

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This melody is also known as the Ukranian Bell Carol.

General Info

Year: 1904 [1914?] / 2016
Duration: c. 2:00
Difficulty: II (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Grand Mesa
Cost: Score and Parts (print) - $50.00   |   Score Only (print) - $15.00


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None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Carol of the Bells is a popular Christmas carol composed by Ukrainian composer Mykola Leontovych in 1914 with lyrics by Peter J. Wilhousky. The song is based on a Ukrainian folk chant called Shchedryk.

The song is recognized by a four-note ostinato motif. It has been arranged many times for different genres, styles of singing and settings and has been covered by artists and groups of many genres: classical, metal, jazz, country music, rock, and pop. The piece has also been featured in films, television shows, and parodies.

- Program Note from Wikipedia

This work was first performed by students at Kiev University in December of 1916, and in its original form was sung by a-cappella four-voice choir. Flowers’ arrangement begins with bells and flutes playing the ostinato, and is followed by a full band fanfare. It continues with a traditional setting of the carol, employing colorful orchestration utilizing contrasting brass and woodwind choirs. A second section is introduced by a sudden percussion interlude, which ushers in a more contemporary setting of the carol.

Mr. Flowers originally wrote this arrangement for the Dueitt Middle School Band in Spring, Texas.

- Program Note from Spring High School Wind Ensemble concert program, 16 December 2016

Sources vary on composition date, 1904 or 1914.


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State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


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