Raising the bar on romance for all future gay weddings, Andrew Byrne wrote "We Stand" on the occasion of his marriage to Mark Blankenship on Aug. 27, 2012, at the Foundry in New York City. Now they're sharing that special song with the world.
Byrne is a voice teacher to many top Broadway singers. Blankenship is a journalist and critic currently working at Theater Development Fund, the folks behind the TKTS booth in Times Square.
“For our ceremony, I wanted to write a piece for Mark that would tell him how powerful it felt for me to be able to legally wed him in our state,” says Byrne. “I decided to write it as a choral piece because we were all coming together as a community to celebrate his and my love for one another, but also the love that we all share, and the hope that equality will soon come to everyone.”
Accompanied by Carol Hess and conducted by Amy Justman, "We Stand" was performed at the ceremony by Stanley Bahorek, Whit Baldwin, Casey Cole, Dena Cubbin, Matthew Deming, Michael DiLiberto, Leslie Henstock, Shanna Lesniak, Alison Mahoney, James Newman, Jenn Newman, and Robby Sharpe.
Watch video of the performance below and then read the inspiring lyrics.
lyrics by Andrew Byrne
We stand today in a place beyond
Where we ever hoped we’d be.
We stand today to create a bond
Just you and me.
This world has not been mapped.
Our path is fresh and new,
With energy untapped
And wishes that come true.
We stand today, as our oath is sworn
Ever to be intertwined.
We stand today, in a way reborn,
Our souls combined.
Though sometimes it appeared
We’d never see this day,
The darkness left and cleared
Our fears away.
In our everyday existence
We find joy at every turn.
We have moved through such a distance
For we listen and we learn.
How we care cannot be stated.
What we share is our private bliss.
This union we’ve created,
It started with a kiss
That took us by surprise.
There was no way to miss
That look within your eyes.
And now we two will be as one,
As surely as the morning sun will rise.
We stand today as a happy pair,
Making a new family.
We stand today, with an answered prayer
For a future we’re so glad to see.
Yes, history has changed,
And destiny arranged
The kind of life we never could have planned.
This love will not be blocked,
This love has been unlocked,
And in this love we stand.