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Monday, November 26, 2012 (read 967 times)

Spanish Christmas Songs

by Dilek

Learning Spanish with songs is an entertaining way to learn new vocabulary and helps to understand more about Spanish culture.
We are slowly getting closer to the end of 2012 and if we put aside the anxiety caused by the Mayan Calendar prophecy, another exciting Christmas and New Year’s Eve will be waiting for us to celebrate.

In Spain, Christmas (Navidad) is celebrated in a sacred atmosphere. In town centres or main squares, big pine trees, lighted up statues of Belén or depicting the scene of birth of Jesus Christ are placed and generally people start to prepare almost two months before the big day. They hang lights on the streets, the shops are full of Christmas decorations and Three Wise Men (Los Reyes Magos) give presents to the kids on the streets.

One of the typical and important traditions in Spanish speaking countries is to sing Christmas carols or "villancicos". Villancicos are poetic forms which is sung with music mainly in Spain and Latin America. It started in the middle ages then became famous in Renaissance period throughout all Europe and in Spain also it has an important part in Christmas celebrations. In December, not only the churces but also the school choirs prepare songs and besides in family gatherings it is a common tradition to sing carols. Here is a selection of the well known Christmas songs which might be interesting and beneficial to celebrate Christmas in Spanish.

Noche de Paz:  Silent Night is a famous Christmas carol written by Austrian father Joseph Mohr and composed by Franz Xaver Gruber accompanied by guitar melody. It is translated into Spanish by Federico Fliedner and describes the night of the birth of Jesus.

Adeste Fideles: It is a hymn tune derived from England yet it is not clear who created it; the ultimate composer is believed to be John Francis Wade and the lyrics are in Latin. It has been a popular Christmas carol since the end of 18th century and it is sung in Spain as well as other European countries.

Campana Sobre Campana: It is one of the most notable Christmas song emerged from Andalusia where many other Spanish villancicos come from.

El Pequeño Tamborilero: It is also one of the popular Christmas carol composed by American Katherine Kennicott Davis in 1941 and has many translations including Spanish.

Here is a Spanish version of Jingle Bell Rock and the kids will surely enjoy it while learning new words with a classic song.

If you want to experience this favorite time of the year, don't miss this opportunity to celebrate Christmas in Spain or Mexico!!

Keywords: Christmas,Spanish culture,Christmas songs,Navidad


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