In early April, choir members from several decades returned to campus to mark Robbe Delcamp’s retirement with a reunion and concert. Over the hours of a weekend, they relearned music, sang, reminisced and honored a consummate teacher.
“On such a night as this, how can any of us keep from singing” said Vice-Chancellor McCardell at the dinner honoring Delcamp. “For as the great historian Henry Adams noted in The Education of Henry Adams, ‘a teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops.’ Cliches become clichés for a reason, and that is that they speak essential truths. As we look around this room tonight, we can see exactly what Adams meant. So many of you here have been touched by these teachers, and you have touched others, and that touching, and re-touching, down through the years, will indeed affect eternity.”
For 38 years, Dr. Robert Delcamp has kept time in All Saints’ Chapel. He has wound the metronome of college students’ voices, and observed the liturgical calendar in its seasons: Epiphany, Holy Week, and especially the Lessons and Carols of Advent. Through nimble hands and feet, he has persuaded the Casavant Frères organ to breath life into the music of Marcel Dupré, Camille Saint-Saëns, Alexandre Guilmant, Charles-Marie Widor, and others.
Many choir alumni have set out to honor Robbe Delcamp’s contributions to the University by raising $150,000 (the minimum required to establish a scholarship in his name). To date, about $105,000 has been given or pledged for the Delcamp Scholarship that will provide financial aid for recruiting and retaining undergraduates who contribute to the University Choir.
“Financial aid is among the most important needs at Sewanee,” says Terri Williams, director of development. “Thanks to the leadership of Dr. Delcamp, the University Choir has long been a touchstone for the community, one of our enduring institutions and one which touches us regularly and profoundly as we celebrate the turning of every year and the accomplishments of our students and faculty. A scholarship to support that vital institution is a fitting tribute to an important figure in Sewanee history.”
To make a gift or pledge to the Delcamp scholarship, visit http://sewaneegateway.com/delcamp. The Advancement Office requests that your gifts to the Delcamp Scholarship be in addition to your regular donations to the Sewanee Annual Fund, including annual gifts made in honor of retiring faculty.
You can also send a check to the Advancement Office at this address:
Attn. Delcamp Fund
735 University Ave.
Sewanee, TN 37383