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Real world story
Carol of the Bells" is a popular Christmas carol.
Originally it existed as Ukrainian national song "Shchedryk" (Ukr: Щедрик, "Bountiful Evening"). In beginning of 20th century Ukrainian composer Mykola Leontovych reworked it.
In fact he worked on it almost all his adult life (his life was rather short, died in age 43). The first version of the song was written before 1901, the second version – in 1906-1908, third in 1914, fourth in 1916, and finally, the fifth – 1919. For the first time "Shchedryk" was performed by the choir of Kiev University in 1916. The first performance brought huge success to the composer. Leontovich's name became known both in musical circles and among the general public.
On October 5, 1921, composition was first performed in the USA – at a concert at Carnegie Hall in New York City. The song became so popular that in 1936 Peter Vegovsky (according to other accounts - Peter Wilhousky), who worked for NBC radio, composed the English version of the words "Generous." The song resembled Vilhovsky 's call back, and he recorded this image in his poems. The song later established itself in the musical culture of the West under the title "Carol of the Bells." Until today, American choirs, professional and amateur, sing this piece as a carol for Christmas.
Wilhousky's lyrics are under copyright protection (owned by Carl Fischer Music); the music is in the public domain. The music is based on a four-note ostinato. It has been performed in many genres: classical, metal, jazz, country music, rock, and pop. The piece has also been featured in films, television shows, and parodies.