The Power of Song

From Deep in the Human Soul

Hearing this choral group in the Panida Theatre in Sandpoint, where I remember clearly sitting as a teenager nearly 60 years ago, was an experience I find it hard to describe. I recorded bits of it here in these short video cuts, but I wished almost desperately that I’d been equipped with professional recording equipment and broadcast quality video camera on a tripod.

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Dr. Amy Porter singing solo from a great interior depth of being that reports truly what the psalmist must have intended in Psalm 42.
Photos by Dwayne Parsons

Why did it affect me so deeply? Well, I have no idea how it rang in the hearts of others attending. I know my wife, Claudia, enjoyed it immensely and there was a standing ovation at the end, so I can presume that others were touched as deeply as I. But as to why, I stumble on words, wanting very much to describe my emotions.

They gave us such variety, from historic vocal presentations of great composers like Mendalsson, to contemporary American songwriters like Copeland. Though the Chorale Coeur d’Alene also performs with orchestras, in this case, with 60 some talented and trained vocalists packed on a stage barely large enough, and accompanied by the perfect piano of David Brewster’s electric Roland, the sounds rolling off the stage into the romantic atmosphere of that great old theatre resonated through my soul, my whole being. These cell phone recordings don’t give them justice.

In the long run, I have to stand and tell you, reader, that this is indeed music for our time. We need it here on earth. Decide for yourself. This was the first performance of the fall/winter season for the Chorale Coeur d’Alene group. I’ll post announcements on locations as they move through the season, hopefully with a little more leeway that I was able to give just 2 days before this performance. But I give this to you anyway, weak as my equipment was to bring the full essence and emotional impact to your desktop and laptop or cell phone.

This is not radio music. It’s very much performance. Directed by Dr. Stan McDaniel, accompanied by Pianist, David Brewster and the indescribably powerful solos by of Dr. Amy Porter, it was a stage experience that resonates still in my ears, now 6 days hence.

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The walk back to our car on Sandpoint’s well-lit downtown sidewalks, filled with song, filled with good things, with hope and love and the feeling of comfort and contentment that only the songs of many voices can put into the human soul.

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