Hanukkah O Hanukkah
arr. by Paul Jennings
This festive song is perhaps the best known Hanukkah song. Adapted from the old Yiddish folk song "Y'mey Hanukkah," it can be found arranged in many different styles and with many different variations of lyrics. For our setting we have mixed a little folk style and a little klezmer at a moderate tempo. The recording features several prominent acoustic instruments including guitar, string bass, and mandolin. We are especially pleased with the solo performances from our clarinetist, Greg Imboden, and our violist, Michael Strauss. Their sense of style adds a lot to the performance.
The recording follows the printed music including the repeat. In your performance, you can do what we did, singing the same lyrics twice, or you can add other lyrics the second time. There are many options available out there, including a number of variations on the Internet. You might also want to use part of the second verse to dance a bit. Learn the horah and dance through half or all of that verse. Another option is to clap on the offbeats as you sway to the music. For younger children this may not be as easy as it sounds. The relaxed tempo may encourage them to clap ahead of the beat. Visual assistance from you or other helpers would be a good idea.
Text is taken from Music K-8 magazine.