Ein Lichtlein Brennt (English)
adapted/arr. Karl Hitzemann
"Ein Lichtlein Brennt" is an old, well-known Advent poem in Germany. So, we thought it would be a great opportunity to sing in German (auf Deutsch!). This song is a round as well, which provides another nice challenge for your singers. However, if neither of those options appeals to you, you could sing it in unison and use the English translation that we have provided. Also, if singing things about Advent (or anything Christmas related) is not allowed in your school, you could sing it as a round (or in unison) and just sing "lu" instead of the words. The accompaniment track has a wonderful holiday sound to it. It features a rhythm section, winds, bells, and chimes.
This song would be a natural for using candles, or to be safer, artificial candles like Kandle Lights™. As the song is being sung, have one candle (or one group of candles) light at the point "Erst eins" (first one) is sung. Then two, three, and four can be lit in order.
As mentioned above, we have provided you with an English translation for this poem right on the music. We decided to go with a more "meaningful" translation, rather than a "literal" translation. Meaning that, literally translated, "ein Lichtlein brennt" means "a candle burns." We didn't think that was very poetic or musical to sing. So, we went with a translation that captures the spirit of the meaning – "the candles light." The rest of the translation is very straightforward. By the way, we have a terrific pronunciation guide for you to listen to. It will help you and your students sound like you are natives of Deutschland! (Thanks to Jim Ziegler and Katie Ebel for all their help.)
Text is taken from Music K-8 magazine.