Mykola Leontovich (1877 - 1921) Mykola Dmytrovych Leontovych (Ukrainian: Ìèêîëà Äìèòðîâè÷ Ëåîíòîâè÷) (December 1, 1877 - January 22 or January 23, 1921) was a Ukrainian composer, choral conductor, and teacher of international renown. Leontovych is most famous for composing Shchedryk in 1916, the song that Carol of the Bells was later adapted from.
Mykola Leontovych graduated in 1899 from the theological seminary in Kamianets-Podilskyi. After teaching at schools throughout present-day Ukraine, including the guberniyas of Kiev, Yekaterinoslav, and Podillia, he moved on to study music. He received private instruction in both St Petersburg and Kiev (at the latter with Boleslav Yavorsky), and soon came to be known as an adept choirmaster. In 1918, at a time of great Ukrainian nationalist revival, Leontovych began teaching at the Kiev Conservatory as well as the Mykola Lysenko Institute of Music and Drama.
Leontovych's is remembered today mostly because of the body of musical works he left behind, including over 150 choral compositions which range from artistic arrangements of folk songs, religious works (including his liturgy), cantatas, and choral compositions to the texts of various Ukrainian poems. Although he attempted to write a Ukrainian opera (Na rusalchyn velykden? - On the Water Nymph's Easter) based on the writing of Borys Hrinchenko, he never had the chance to finish it. In 1921, he was shot down by a robber at the home of his parents.