Two More ‘Passing’ Songs

When you walk through a storm
Hold your head up high
And don’t be afraid of the dark…

Carousel tells of millworker Julie Jordan and carousel barker Billy Bigelow. They fall in love and marry.

The troubled Billy is violent towards Julie. Involved in a bungled burglary he kills himself.

Nettie, Julie’s cousin, sings ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ to comfort the pregnant Julie.

Walk on through the wind,
Walk on through the rain,
Tho’ your dreams be tossed and blown.

Louise her daughter grows up isolated and lonely. Julie suffers prejudice as a single parent.

Unseen, Billy returns to earth to see his daughter at her graduation.

‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ reassures Julie and Louise. It indicates Billy’s redemption through his love – even in death – for his wife and daughter.

They are never alone.

Walk on, walk on
With hope in your heart
And you’ll never walk alone…

*****

There’s a place for us,
Somewhere a place for us.
Peace and quiet and open air
Wait for us
Somewhere.

West Side Story tells the ‘Romeo and Juliet’ story of conflict between two gangs.

It about ethnicity, xenophobia and racial prejudice. Tony a white boy falls in love with Maria, a Puerto Rican girl.

Tension between the two gangs grows. Tony kills Bernardo, Maria’s brother.

Tony and Maria sing ‘Somewhere’. There is love and hope even in the hatred and killings of racial division.

We’ll find a new way of living,

We’ll find a way of forgiving
Somewhere . . .

Events take their course. Tony is shot. Maria sings part of ‘Somewhere’ as a statement of hope and love even in death.

There’s a place for us,
A time and place for us.
Hold my hand and we’re halfway there.
Hold my hand and I’ll take you there
Somehow,
Some day,
Somewhere!

Ref:

‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ from Carousel by Richard Rogers and Oscar Hammerstein (1945: – film 1956)

‘Somewhere’ from West Side Story by Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim (1957: – film 1961)

One thought on “Two More ‘Passing’ Songs

  1. I remember seeing this at the Drive In cinema in Nairobi many years ago – 1961 or 1962 when I was about 6 or 7 years old. It was so moving. We used to listen to the record on our portable record player. I had forgotten and can’t remember Tony killing Bernardo, but then it was a long time ago.

    Like

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