Silent Night carol at 200 years since the first performance in Austria


The famous song was translated into 300 languages and dialects. It was originally written as a poem by priest Joseph Mohr in 1816 and first performedat the chapel in Oberndorf village, near Salzburg. two years later, Mohr asked his friend, the organist, choirmaster and schoolteacher Franz Xaver Gruber, to compose a melody. The carol became known outside Austria when it was incorporated into the repertoire of two travelling singing groups: the Rainer Singers and the Strasser Siblings. It was performed including in the United States and was a big success.


The first English version of “Silent Night” can be traced back to the middle of the 19th century. Pope Francis has declared “Silent Night” to be his favourite song. Travel operators around the world this year have included special stops on their itineraries to mark the anniversary. Visitors have come even from  Sri Lanka and Japan. Museum openings, special exhibitions, a new stage play and numerous other events was dedicated to the anniversary. Silent Night was included within UNESCO’s Intangible Cultural Heritage list. People in centuries enjoed the song’s lyrics: „Silent night, holy night! / All is calm, all is bright. / Round yon Virgin, Mother and Child./ Holy infant so tender and mild,/ Sleep in heavenly peace, / Sleep in heavenly peace (…)”


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