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The Children's Crusade

Plays, Verse Plays & Musicals
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Childrens' Crusade (A Musical)               * Also available on CD *

Reviews of the original shorter version premiered in the Opera House in 1975 were The best since Super Star. It builds dramatically to a climax.” Maria Prerauer Opera critic Daily Telegraph.

“The songs and lyrics form a good score with many interesting melodies.” Teddy Homes Chappells Music London.

A longer revised version is to be performed by St. Andrews Cathedral School, Sydney  in October 2009.

The Childrens’ Crusade occurred at a time of turbulence and unrest when wandering troubadours were exciting popular imagination with tales of the last crusade which had impoverished France. The spark which kindled the Childrens’ Crusade was lit be an orphaned 12 year old shepherd boy, Stephen, who claimed Jesus had appeared in the field in St. Denis, where he was minding sheep, and told him to tell the King to launch a new crusade.

The surge of hope driving these marches, that the world can be changed, is expressed in this triumphant song:

Act 2 Scene 1 - Like a Comet
Like a comet in the universe of time
our band will blaze across the dark
that glooms on every man.
We must call the world to hear.
We must march with sound of feet.
We must wake the silent beat
of man’s dead heart and ear.
                And our cries will rise to echo through the mountains
                and our battle blast will shatter all their walls
                and a thousand years will hear reverberation
                as our call will summon up, as our call will summon up
                summon up our generation, summon up our generation.
Like a meteor astonishing the sky
Our cavalcade will burn its path
on children yet to come.
They will hear our words resound.
They will carry on our name.
They will bear our brandished flame
and walk on fiery ground.
                They will shout about our gospel from the mountains
                and their chanting reach beyond the seven seas
                and our singing still will make reverberation
                as our cries will tell it all
                as our cries will tell it all.
Let them know our indignation.
Let them know our indignation.

Thirty  thousand crusaders – priests, nuns, knights and young men  as well as children – set out from  Vendome, France, for Marseilles in 1212. Many fell by the wayside. The rest were trapped into boarding the ships of slavers. Only one, a priest returned to France 18 years later - sent by the Governor of Egypt to tell the true end of their story, a legend that has reverberated in history ever since.

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