Saturday, March 20, 2004

RIP, Sydney Carter:

"Lord of the Dance" composer dies at 88.

"I did not think the churches would like it at all. I thought many people would find it pretty far flown, probably heretical and anyway dubiously Christian. But in fact people did sing it and, unknown to me, it touched a chord. . ."

My late sister's favorite hymn - we sang it through choked-back tears at her funeral - and one of mine as well. St. Cornelius parish also took to it fondly. It was an Easter season staple there. Old Fr. Dunn remarked more than once, "You sang that like a bunch of Protestants!" It was meant as a compliment, he explained. Good thing, I'm not sure the pew choir was exactly pleased, at least until they got the explanation.

BTW, this has virtually nothing to do with Michael Flatley or clogging. He just borrowed the song title for his revue, and set a dance to its tune (Shaker Song). Sad that generations of non-churchgoers won't know the hymn, but only the show.

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