Hi Nicole Marie
Your announcement about airing the marvelous Welsh Lullaby "Suo Gan" that was used as the theme in the movie Empire of the Sun caught my attention.
I played this tune during a public performance last month, and after the concert a member of the audience, who speaks Welsh, came up to me and corrected my pronunciation of Suo Gan. Here’s what I learned:
In Welsh the letter “U” is pronounced as though it was “ee” in English words such as peek, or seek. So, the Welsh words “Suo Gan” should be pronounced something like “See-o Gan” or “C-O Gan.
You can find a short pronunciation guide to Welsh at: http://britannia.com/celtic/wales/language.html
That site offers this advice: U in Welsh is pronounced as in pita:
Welsh words: ganu (ganee); cu (key); Cymru (Kumree); tu (tee); un (een)
The tune has been used for a number of different lyrics. The English translation of the lyrics sung in the movie are (to the best of my knowledge):
1. Sleep my baby, at my breast,
'Tis a mother’s arms round you.
Make yourself a snug, warm nest.
Feel my love forever new.
Harm will not meet you in sleep,
Hurt will always pass you by.
Child beloved, always you’ll keep,
In sleep gentle, mother’s breast nigh.
2. Sleep in peace tonight, sleep,
O sleep gently, what a sight.
A smile I see in slumber deep,
What visions make your face bright?
Are the angels above smiling,
At you in your peaceful rest?
Are you beaming back while in
Peaceful slumber on mother’s breast?
3. Do not fear the sound, it’s a breeze
Brushing leaves against the door.
Do not dread the murmurring seas,
Lonely waves washing the shore.
Sleep child mine, there’s nothing here,
While in slumber at my breast,
Angels smiling, have no fear,
Holy angels guard your rest.