Monday, August 02, 2010

Amazing Voice: Rhema Marvanne

Rhema Marvanne
(Image from Rhema Marvanne)

I was recently sent a link to this little girl's rendition of "Amazing Grace," and her voice is amazing on this classic gospel song, three stanzas of which she sings:
Amazing grace! How sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch like me!
I once was lost but now I'm found
Was blind, but now I see.

'Twas grace that taught my heart to fear,
And grace my fears relieved;
How precious did that grace appear
The hour I first believed!

When we've been there ten thousand years,
Bright shining as the sun,
We've no less days to sing God's praise,
Than when we first begun.
Than when we first begun.

Amazing grace! How sweet the sound . . .
Beautiful, astonishing voice for a seven-year-old girl. There's also a story, provided at her website:
"Rhema Marvanne was born 9/15/02, lost her mother, Wendi Marvanne Voraritskul, to ovarian cancer on November 8, 2008. Rhema lives in Carrollton, TX and attends The Branch Church (Vista Ridge Campus). This video was done in Texas around McKinney & Dallas where she lives. Her mother had died just a few months before she got to put this together."
I'm a bit of a softie, so that touched me to the quick, but even tougher hearts than mine will ache a bit for the little girl.

But I also ache to think of what lies ahead as she grows up in the spotlight. Rhema has already appeared recently (June 2010) on the Star King Show in Seoul, Korea! (Though Rhema's website refers to the city as "Soul, Korea.") She's obviously on the upward path toward becoming an international star, but I worry that she'll be ruined by all the attention, some of it rather tacky (yes, Star King) . . . and, I hesitate to say, overproduced videos.

Take the video for "Amazing Grace," that I linked to above. The little girl's voice is perfect, and the video's beginning is appropriate to the song's simplicity, also the simple guitar by Gary Chapman, but the constant switching of scenes presenting Rhema in a variety of poses distracts from the song's beauty. I presume that's the responsibility of Jason Van Sickel, who produced this music video, though I don't know for a fact. I wish that the video imagery had remained as simple as the beginning and that Rhema had just stayed in that plain old church, singing this simple though beautiful song.

My advice? Close your eyes to the overproduced or glitzy videos . . . and just listen to what a talented little seven-year-old can do.

UPDATE: Some of the links keep changing, but if you don't arrive at the video intended, just look around at the website to find it.

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At 7:45 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Works just as well if one just removes one's bi-focals.


At 7:50 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Assuming that one is that blind in the first place . . .

Jeffery Hodges

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At 7:19 PM, Blogger John from Daejeon said...

You might find this interesting as you start planning for your kids' futures.

If they plan on attending college in the U.S., it might be wise to have them finish their final year of high school in state to qualify for in-state rates.

At 7:24 PM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Thanks, we'll keep that in mind . . . if we can just impose on relatives for a year.

Jeffery Hodges

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