Y'Mei HaChanukah (satb)

Catalog ID: S-476
Translation: O Chanukah, O Chanukah (Days of Chanukah)
First Line: On the days of Chanukah, the dedication of our sanctuary...
Composer: arr. Ethan Nash
Author: Mordkha Rivesman
Voicing: satb
Accompaniment: piano, clarinet
Language: English, Hebrew, Yiddish
Other: new for 2022


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This is an arrangement of the Hebrew and English adaptations of the Yiddish song by Mordkha Rivesman. The original Yiddish text (which appears at the top of the page) is available in transliteration as a supplement from the publisher in case the choir wants to use it in place of a Hebrew or English verse.. The song identifies musical, linguistic, and cultural practices of Chanukah, some of which are connected specifically with Ashkenazic Jews. The lighting of the menorah is a custom that commemorates the “miracle of oil.” As the classic version of the story goes, after the Maccabee army had defeated the Syrian Greeks and reclaimed their holy temple, they only had enough oil to keep their lamp lit for one night; the fact that it remained lit for 8 nights is the reason that Chanukah is celebrated for 8 days. In addition, potato pancakes (latkes or levivot) and jelly doughnuts (sufganiyot) are traditional foods eaten since they are prepared through frying in oil. The dreidel is a spinning top with a Hebrew letter on each of its four sides—Nun, Gimmel, Hei, and Shin—standingfor the phrase Nes Gadol Hayah Sham—“A great miracle happened there.” (In Israel, the 4th letter is a Pei for the word Po, meaning “here.”).

Dr. Ethan Nash

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