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"Sanvean: I am your shadow" is a song co-written in September 1993 by Lisa Gerrard and composer/multi-instrumentalist Andrew Claxton during rehearsals in Ireland for the 1993 Dead Can Dance international tour. Lisa Gerrard stated she wrote this song missing her family that had remained in Australia. Its first public performance was in Sligo, Ireland and first recorded on their 1994 live album Toward the Within, and later on Gerrard's 1995 solo album The Mirror Pool and The Best of Lisa Gerrard in 2007. Like most of her work it is sung in a euphonic and emotional pseudo-language.
It has become an iconic song through its frequent appearance on soundtracks e.g. Hermès 24 Faubourg advert 1995, UK Health Education Authority MMR immunisation campaign 1998-2003, The West Wing TV drama episode 7A WF 83429 in 2003 and numerous Academy Award-nominated films. It is a favourite choice throughout the world for weddings, funerals and other solemn occasions.
The Cadets, a top five drum corps in Allentown, Pennsylvania, performed their own arrangement brass, percussion and solo vocal throughout the 2006 drum corps season. The use of amplification and the untraditional solo singer caused some controversy amongst drum corps fanatics. "Sanvean" is included in their 2006 recording Through the Looking Glass Part II.
A free right of use of the song was given in 2006 to the Dutch NGO 'Natuur en Milieu' (Nature and environment) for their campaign 'Geef natuur de ruimte' (make way for nature).
- video of original live performance on 17 Nov 1993 in The Mayfair Theatre, Santa Monica. Lisa Gerrard vocals, Andrew Claxton solo keyboard
- 1995 video directed by Nigel Grierson
- 2006 video of live outdoor performance by The Cadets, starts at 01:21
- 2006 video of dutch NGO Natuur and Milieu
- website of Lisa Gerrard
- webpage of Sarah Brightman's Symphony album
- webpage of Duo Spiritalis
- webpage of DJ Taucher's Child of the Universe clips