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January 7, 2004

Chicago Tribune

In a scene from "Cold Mountain," Ada and Inman exchange glances from hard wooden pews as they sing from their "Sacred Harp" hymnals. The congregation keeps time to the jubilant a cappella tune, rigid hands slicing the air, strong voices lifted in praise. When news of war interrupts the service, the male parishioners eagerly file out of the church and the women continue to sing: "I'm glad that I am born to die / From grief and woe my soul shall fly / And I don't care to stay here long!" Despite its heaven-bound theme, "I'm Going Home" is a ray of light in a brutal film of survival, personal growth and enduring love. "It's really a joyful song, and Anthony [Minghella, who directed the Miramax film] wanted some brightness in there," says Tim Eriksen, a Minneapolis-based musician who taught Nicole Kidman (Ada) and Jude Law (Inman) how to sing Sacred Harp music. "There's considerable darkness in the film. But in the church scene, there's white light streaming in, and everybody's just really enjoying themselves singing." More

Posted by acapnews at January 7, 2004 9:42 AM

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