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William Hayman Cummings (1831 – 1915)
William Hayman Cummings (1831 – 1915) was born in Sidbury (near Sidmouth) in Devon, England. He was an English musician, tenor and organist at Waltham Abbey.
In 1847, as a teenager, he was one of the choristers when Felix Mendelssohn conducted his Elijah at Exeter Hall. He is credited in 1855 with linking Felix Mendelssohn‘s tune to Charles Wesley’s words Hark! The Herald Angels Sing, which are now universally inextricably linked. He was the last-minute tenor soloist at the première of The Masque at Kenilworth (1866) by Arthur Sullivan.
Cummings founded the Purcell Society in 1876. He served as singing professor at the Royal Academy of Music for 15 years beginning in 1879, then became principal of the Guildhall School of Music. He received an honorary Doctorate in Music from Dublin University in 1900.
Hark The Herald Angels Sing : Lyrics
Hark! the herald angels sing
“Glory to the newborn King!
Peace on earth and mercy mild,
God and sinners reconciled”
Joyful, all ye nations rise
Join the triumph of the skies,
With the angelic host proclaim:
“Christ is born in Bethlehem”
Hark! The herald angels sing
“Glory to the newborn King!”
Christ, by highest heav’n adored,
Christ the everlasting Lord!
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