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singer, musician, U.S.A.
Music CD, Love Setteth the World Aflame
by Roya Bauman, U.S.A.
Recently at the Downtown United Presbyterian Church in Rochester, New York, (where my husband George and I have singing jobs), several Bahá´í songs were featured as part of the sermon. The sermon was about how religious faiths use poetic language in expressing religious/spiritual thoughts and teachings, and how such language can be uplifting and transformative. The speaker addressed not only Christianity but also Judaism, Islam and the Bahá´í Faith; she also quoted Rumi, the Persian poet. She had heard my CD at a friend's house and decided to interweave 3 of the songs into her sermon. George and I, with help from choir director John Bodinger, performed the following songs, all composed by Anne Biswell of Kansas City: O God Guide Me!, The Healing Prayer, Home of Peace. In the church bulletin, each song was listed along with its author (Bahá'u'lláh or ĎAbdu'l-Bahá or "text unauthenticated") and the composer.
Excerpt from Arts Dialogue, February 2000, page 4
Oneness of Humanity Arts Concert, Rochester, New York, U.S.A.
By Roya Bauman, Alloysia Haynes, Carl Appleton and Jaci Ayorinde,
In March the Rochester, NY, Bahá´í community organized A Celebration
Of The Oneness Of Humanity concert held at the School of the Arts.
Nearly 500 people attended, more than half of whom were not Bahá´ís,
and the event was an unparalleled success for the local Bahá´í
community. Performances included: a dancer who glided across the
stage, lifted in a graceful pose by a man in a wheelchair; black and
white youth performing the Martyr's Step Dance, a dance about the
sacrifices of the early Bahá´ís in Persia; Native American youth who
shared their culture in song and dance; African drumming and dancing;
a dance performed by a group with Down's Syndrome; a young Indian
college student performing an energetic dance entitled Sivastakam, a
dance praising Lord Shiva; and a local performance artist, founder of
PeaceArt International, who sang and danced original, moving works,
dedicated to greater human understanding. Interspersed among the
performances were readings from six of the world's major religions,
read by representative of each faith.
The event was interpreted for the hearing impaired and the performance
was accompanied by a show of students´ artwork from around the
Rochester area on the event´s theme. Prizes were awarded to the three
pieces judged to be the best. The colorful and inspiring works were on
display in the lobby of the School of the Arts before, during and
after the performance. A full cafe of food from different countries
and cultures was provided by local Bahá´ís and offered free to
attendees. Dishes represented the countries of Iran, Greece, Jamaica,
China, Italy, Vietnam, Trinidad, Guyana, and many others. While
everyone ate and interacted, the Trinidad and Tobago Steelband
entertained the crowd in the foyer. Four people worked for eight
months to produce the program, with the hope that it would help bring
together and galvanize the entire community. Care was taken to invite
participation from as many cultural and religious groups within the
community as possible. Many audience members commented afterwards
about how moving and transformative the evening was, and the Bahá´í
community has a renewed spirit permeating its efforts.
Excerpt from Arts Dialogue, June 1998, page 5
Arts Dialogue, Dintel 20, NL 7333 MC, Apeldoorn, The Netherlands