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Julian Wiles, Founder and Producing Artistic Director
Marybeth Clark, Associate Artistic Director

November 10, 2009

A New Day Dawns: A Theme Song for A Christmas Carol

Filed under: Back Stage Blog — julianw @ 2:44 pm

A number of years ago we began looking for some beautiful but lesser known carols to add to our production of A Christmas Carol. “Waissail, Waissail,” and  “Lo How A Rose” are two great carols we discovered.  And then one day, Broadway veteran, Oscar Kosarin, who was our music director at the time, came in with an obscure Polish carol . It was called  “W slobie lezy”  which translates as “He lies in the cradle”. A 1908 English translation gave it the title of “Infant Holy, Infant Lowly”.

Oscar said to me “I don’t know where you might use this, but it’s a lovely melody.”  It is lovely but I could never seem to find a place for it in the story.    Later I was trying to find a reason that Scrooge himself might sing someplace in the play and thought perhaps he might have a found great joy in singing as a youth, and like much of his younger self, had let that joy slip away over the years.

From that spark came “A New Day Dawns.” I used the Polish tune but wrote new lyrics and gave it to Young Ebeneezer.  He now sings it when he meets Belle at the Fezziwig’s Christmas party.

In this season’s production.  Amanda Wansa, our new Music Director, has helped us to expand “New Day” into a sort of theme song that you will hear returning in several key moments.  With it is a promise of hope for a new day, a new beginning, “A New Day Dawns” sums up the possibilities of change, redemption and rebirth even for hard hearted ol’ sinners like Ebenezer Scrooge and of course for people like you and me.

Taylor Carnie as Tiny Tim in Charleston Stage's "A Christmas Carol"

Taylor Carnie as Tiny Tim in Charleston Stage's "A Christmas Carol"

A New Day Dawns

In the darkness,
In the silence,
Can you hear the angels sing?
In the softness,
Of a whisper
Hear the tidings that they bring,
Far away a babe is waking,
In it’s eyes the day is breaking.
A new day dawns today for you.
A new day dawns today for you.

Though the ages,
Comes the story,
Of the promise of that night.
When the heavens
Filled with glory
And a bright star burning bright.
Star of wonder, softly shining,
Here the message of its divining,
A new day dawns today for you.
A new day dawns today for you.

Adapted from the traditional Polish  Carol, W Slobie Lezy (He lies in the cradle).
New lyrics by Julian Wiles.

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