D. Randall Faro
Another Word for It
Magic in the air. Some would phrase it that way. Anybody there would have felt it. Better yet, magic in the soul . . . soul meaning the core of a human being’s being.
We’re talking about the combined Seattle Men’s Chorus and Seattle Women’s Chorus flooding downtown Olympia, Washington’s atmosphere with sound waves that were soul-stirring. (There’s that word again.) Hundreds of voices and minds producing what only the joining of hearts can do. Those hearts were embodied in black and white, Latino and Asian, male and female, straight and gay, thin and fat, tall and short. Inclusion and mutual affirmation grinned its beatific face across the whole company.
They moved and grooved and smiled out the musical pieces. It was obvious that they were having fun, and they really had no choice following the lead of the director. He coaxed their vocals as if fire ants were crawling up his pants; as if he had chugged three energy drinks before coming onstage; as if he loved music more than anything in the world. The audience could not help but be pulled along.
The organization has a mission statement: “Our voices transform society through innovative and entertaining programs that build community, illuminate the experiences of LGBTQ people and their
allies, expand inclusion, and inspire justice.” The chorus from their first number says it well:
One moment of conviction, one voice quiet and clear
One act of compassion, it all begins here
No safety now in silence, we've got to stand our ground
No hate. No violence. Not in our town.
They sang with joy radiating in their faces. They sang with conviction unmistakable in their fervor. They sang with hope . . . hope that their songs would comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable. It worked.
Music. There’s another word for it: heaven.