Sunday, 13 September 2009

They're really saying "I love you"

Today is the day for which younger daughter has been longing these past two weeks. The choir director invited her to sing a solo at a children-based service at the Resident Fan Boy's church. This was the result of a triumphant performance at a church banquet last June, where younger daughter performed a passionate, heart-breaking version of "Part of Your World" from The Little Mermaid. Heart-breaking especially if you note the lyrics and imagine a little girl on the autism spectrum singing it beautifully, note perfect. And yes, I know I'm her mother. Trust me, I looked out over the audience (not daring to look at her and distract her) and saw many people wiping their eyes. I should have blogged about it at the time, especially since it was one of the few things about June that didn't suck.

Anyway, word got around to the choir director and it was decided that younger daughter would sing "What a Wonderful World". Actually, my heart sank a little at that, because younger daughter has been singing that song since she was six years old, and she knows so, so many songs. (Perhaps "Cell Block Tango" wouldn't be the best choice for a Sunday morning, but I'm sure we could have come up with something equally arresting.)

However, the choir director was enthused: "There won't be a dry eye in the house!" He was right, of course. After one of those earnest Sunday School semi-skits that took the place of the gospel reading, younger daughter took her place next to the harp. And even though I've heard her sing it so, so many times, I felt my eyes well up. As she came to the line I hear babies cry; I watch them grow, a little ankle-biter of about eighteen months came clomping down the handicap ramp right next to her and clutching a doll, gazed mischievously into the wings, where I suspect a beleaguered parent was trying to coax her back. Younger daughter noted the unexpected entrance but didn't miss a beat.

The 10:15 Sunday service at the Resident Fan Boy's church regularly ends with a "Polychronia" where members of the congregation are invited to share joys and celebrations. A man stood and said: "Many times my partner and I (this church has a sizable gay and lesbian contingent, rather rare in an Anglican church) have had the opportunity to see the face of God here in this congregation. This morning, we saw the face of God and the voice of an angel in (younger daughter's) performance".

So I think she did okay. The choir director, whose skillful harp-playing supported younger daughter's performance so well, is now talking about her singing Ave Maria. Oh my. Schubert or Gounod?


Rob said...

How wonderful! I especially like the unscheduled toddler. But you should gently suggest "Cell Block Tango" in place of "Ave Maria". Congratulations to your daughter anyway.

VioletSky said...

Make a joyful noise...

Jane Henry said...

That's so wonderful, Persephone. There must be something in the air, oldest daughter sings Part of your World too. Am going to blog about how she sang and played piano for us on our anniversary. I crack up every time I hear her sing, and I can imagine how it must have felt for you. Magical. Lovely post.
PS Mine also does Castle on a Cloud - definite bring out the hankie moment!!