Bettering Plainfield with the facts since 2005

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Candlelight Carol Sing...with a little Holiday Hyperbole

Madonna from flyer for the Carol Sing.

Plainfielders are invited to enjoy -- and participate in -- a candlelight carol sing at Newark's beautiful Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart on Wednesday and Thursday evening the 14th and 15th.

A reader in the Van Wyck Brooks Historic District passed along the following in a recent email --

If you would like a truly wonderful musical experience in a magnificent setting, then you should plan to attend one  of the two scheduled Candlelight Carol Sings coming up next week in the Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart in Newark.  This will be the 41st annual carol sing which had its begining when the featured performer for a planned concert in the Basilica was delayed by weather and the conductor led the audience in a selection of songs.

The doors open at 7:00 pm and the concert starts at 8:00 pm in the Cathedral located at Park and Clifton Avenues. in Newark.  The Cathedral is the finest example of neo-Gothic architecture in the Western Hemisphere and it is only a short drive from Plainfield [my emphasis -- DD].

There is secure parking across the street from the Cathedral.

Not only will you be in a wonderful building but the music in that setting is spectacular.  The Cathedral Choir and Instrumental Ensemble will perform and the entire audience will participate in several Carol Sings including several that are sung by candlelight which is a memorable experience.

Tom, one of our [VWB] members,  and a team of interpreters, will be signing the program for the deaf at the performance on December 14th.

For more information or call 973-484-2400 or visit the cathedral's website,

Carol sing is at Newark's stunning Sacred Heart Cathedral.
As for whether Sacred Heart (see more here) is the 'finest example of neo-Gothic architecture in the Western Hemisphere', I can think of a couple of places that would challenge the hyperbole --

St. Patrick's Cathedral, seat of New York's archbishop is a pretty hefty contender (see a profile here),

St. Patrick's is certainly no slouch in the neo-Gothic sweepstakes...

as is also Episcopal Church's Cathedral of Ss. Peter and Paul, otherwise known as The National Cathedral, in Washington, DC (see more here).

...Nor is the National Cathedral, which is of the 'mine is bigger than yours' school...

I won't even offer the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in Morningside Heights (see more here). Big as it is, and with its Gothic fa├žade, it is a mish-mosh and not entirely Gothic.

Though not Gothic throughout, St. John the Divine is of the 'mine is really bigger than yours' school.

For some though, even Gothic is something to be eschewed, as with St. Mary's Cathedral (more properly the Cathedral of St. Mary of the Assumption) in San Francisco (see more here).

St. Mary of the Assumption in San Fracisco says, 'Gothic? What Gothic?'
Some hyperbolists have likened the stunning and decidedly non-Gothic cathedral (which I have found to be reverential and awe-inspiring) to the inner workings of a Whirlpool washer.

Now, that's hyperbole!

-- Dan Damon [follow]

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