Silent Night for Piano Quartet
Piano Quartet - Digital Sheet Music

Item Number: 20678547
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$32.95
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Piano Quartet - Level 1 - Digital Download

SKU: A0.548633

Composed by Gruber. Arranged by James M. Guthrie, ASCAP. Christmas. 11 pages. Jmsgu3 #3405403. Published by jmsgu3 (A0.548633).

Silent Night for piano quartet. The final verse features a surprise re-harmonization of the melody. 


Origins

Father Joseph Mohr wrote the lyrics for a new Christmas Carol. He wanted the new carol for his Christmas Eve Mass. With only a couple of hours until the service, He asked organist and schoolteacher Franz Gruber to write a melody and simple accompaniment to accompany the lyrics. The result is probably the most famous Christmas carols – Silent Night.

First Performance

Perhaps because the organ was undergoing repairs or to ensure the accompaniment was easy enough, Mohr asked Gruber to write it for the guitar. Mohr played the guitar, and Mohr and Gruber gave the world premiere performance at the Christmas Eve Mass in 1818 at St. Nicholas Church in Oberndorf in Salzburg.

Original Score

Eventually, the original score became lost, and Mohr's name was largely forgotten.  Though the public initially recognized Gruber as the composer, many people began rumors that a more famous composer was responsible over time. Thus, they floated the names of Haydn, Mozart, and even Beethoven. Authorities eventually settled the matter when a manuscript in Mohr’s handwriting turned up in 1820. Consequently, we learn that Mohr wrote the lyrics in 1816, and Gruber composed the melody in 1818.

Popularity

Nonetheless, Silent Night is still very popular. Singers have performed this song in nearly every genre and multiple languages. Perhaps the most famous version is the one Bing Crosby crafted. This version is the third best-selling physical single recording in the history of recorded music. This recording was released in 1935 and sold at least 30 million copies.

Only two songs have ever sold more. Elton John released "Candle in the Wind" 1997 and sold 33 million copies. The record for most copies ever sold goes to Bing Crosby. He released "White Christmas" in 1942 and sold 50 million physical copies.

This product was created by a member of ArrangeMe, Hal Leonard's global self-publishing community of independent composers, arrangers, and songwriters. ArrangeMe allows for the publication of unique arrangements of popular titles and original compositions from a variety of voices and backgrounds. The length, difficulty, and retail pricing are determined solely by the discretion of the person who arranged or composed it.

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