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April 23, 2005

Song lyrics spark protest

Charlotte Observer (NC):

Ten members of the Bessemer City High School chorus briefly walked off stage Thursday to protest performing the title song from the 1970s musical "Jesus Christ Superstar." And nearly a dozen students and parents stepped out of the auditorium during "Superstar." The song was part of the spring choral concert honoring 100 years of Broadway musicals.

At issue were the lyrics: "Jesus Christ, Jesus Christ, Who are you? What have you sacrificed? Jesus Christ Superstar, Do you think you're what they say you are?" "I just don't understand why they had picked this song out of all the Broadway songs," said Catherine Duncan, whose daughter Amber, a freshman, was one of the students who opted out of that part of the concert.

Duncan said she felt the song was anti-religion and inappropriate. She was pleased to see others join the protest. Earlier in the day, Principal Ted Saunders said he knew some students might opt out of the song because they found the lyrics objectionable. Saunders said Catherine Duncan called Wednesday to object. Saunders said he told her the song was meant to teach the history of music and not meant to be anti-religion.

"If you take away all of the historical religious music, from Gregorian chant all the way through the present ... you will reduce the exposure of children to our history and our music," Saunders said. Saunders said the school regularly works with those who might object to teaching materials or lessons. Parent Kathy Gamble said that, while she respects decisions not to participate, she wouldn't mind her son, a former chorus member, taking part. "We need for our children to be able to sing Christian songs in our school."

This has to be about the silliest thing I have read in awhile - Editor

Posted by acapnews at April 23, 2005 12:10 AM