Being Who You Are

Instrumentation/Voicing: 
SA, piano (children's choir)

A delightful affirmation of individual differences, this lighthearted romp includes such unlikely compadres as the Ugly Duckling, Rudolph the Reindeer, Susan B. Anthony, the Wright Brothers and Shakespeare.

Winner of the KidSing 2000 International Composer's Competition.

Audio: 

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Order Sheet Music
Catalog Number: 
SEA-003-00
Duration: 
2:00
Commissioned By: 
Waunakee Middle School. Waunakee, WI
Premiere
Premiere Conductor: 
Kathy Bartling
Awards: 

First Prize, KidsSing 2000 Composers Competition - Honorable Mention, John Lennon Songwriting Contest

Performances: 

The Entire Student Body of Waunakee Elementary School (Waunakee, WI) * Premiere
Angelica Cantanti Children's Chorus / Ann Schrooten (Bloomington, MN)
Children's Choir, First Unitarian Universalist Church / Dema Solberg (Houston, TX)
Children's Choir, Grace Episcopal Church / Ann Matlack (Madison, NJ)
Children's Choir, Shawnee Mission Unitarian Universalist Church / Dave Simmons (Overland Park, KS)
Treble Choir Workshop / Andrew Ellingsen - OAKE Conference, Saint Thomas University
Westridge School Elementary Choir / Elizabeth Hangar (Pasadena, CA)
Youth Choir of Unitarian Universalist Church of Nashua / Jed Holland, conductor (Nashua, NH)

Reviews: 

"There are tears in my eyes as I look through the four [children's choir] songs you've sent me. What beautiful work you do! I haven't even gotten to the piano yet to play through the accompaniments, but already I can see on the page that your work will be sung by several of my groups. Thank you, thank you." Betsy Hanger, Performing Arts Teacher at Windward School (Los Angeles, CA)

Text
Text Author or Source: 
Elizabeth Alexander
Language: 
English
Text: 

"Being Who You Are"
Lyric by composer Elizabeth Alexander,
with students from Waunakee Elementary School

Rudolph the reindeer took a lot of flak
'Cause his nose was different from the rest.
The ugly duckling had a scrawny neck
So the others kicked him from the nest.
These two, to name a few, did what they had to do.
Like you, this they knew: "To thine own self be true!"
Rudolph was a great phenomenon,
Soon that duckling turned into a swan,
You'll do fine if you just keep on being who you are.

Susan B. Anthony fought for women's rights
Even though folks said she shouldn't try.
And no one would believe the brothers Wright
When they said that they were going to fly.
These two, to name a few, did what they had to do.
Like you, this they knew: "To thine own self be true."
Susan B., stand up and take a bow,
Airplanes are a dime a dozen now,
When you try, you'll succeed (and how!), being who you are.

So if you wear glasses on your nose,
If you're bald or have eleven toes,
You will find that your best side shows,
(There's no reason to strike a pose!)
You'll do fine, everybody knows, being who you are.

© 1992 by Elizabeth Alexander