Tuesday's grand (but in some ways quite folksy and jolly as well) Australia Day Australian Citizenship Ceremony at Rond Terrace was brought to the most spine-tinglingly rousing of conclusions.
Diego Torre, an operatic tenor from Mexico (and having only been an Australian for about 10 minutes), sang the national anthem so thrillingly that he raised that dull old composition from the dead.
He was accompanied by the Royal Australian Navy Band. Between them they had a major triumph.
"That man who sang the anthem, I think they should have given him two citizenship certificates," one woman enthused as we floated away from the occasion, Torre's tenor still ringing patriotically in our grateful ears.
Mr Torre was one of 27 folk from 13 countries to receive their citizenship certificates from the Prime Minister at Tuesday morning's occasion on the shores of the lake.
Skies of an unAustralian grey threatened an unAustralian drizzle but the rain stayed away. Eerily, the first rays of true sunshine shone through, as if on cue, to give a glitter to the medals and a glow to the gold braid of the arriving Chief of the Defence Force, Air Chief Marshal Mark Binskin. .
Which brings me to my only whinge about this lovely occasion. It is that it was, as it is every year, far too military in tone.
Gorgeous servicemen and women march to and fro to a band's martial airs, guns thunder a 21-explosion salute, fighter jets scream overhead (twice on Tuesday, going and coming), great bemedalled potentates of the armed service are guests of honour.
For the first session of the occasion, until we were given a blissful respite from militariness by Nathaniel singing A Touch of Paradise (the heartfelt love song of a lover crooning to the object of his or her affections) one of my companions in the crowd was Molly, a poodle. Molly hated the jets hurling overhead and the 21 loud bangs from the cannons at Regatta Point. In me (our eyes met knowingly) she had a kindred spirit.
Neither of us could quite see how all this was appropriate. It is an occasion that needs, instead, something more theatrical, something more concert-like, more joyous. There should be less marching and instead some dance. It should be an event a Chief of the Defence Force gambols along to but as just a citizen, in civvies, to join in dancing the tango.
But from when Nathaniel trilled Paradise so feelingly most of that military stuff was put aside. Then the gentle, cordial business of welcoming 27 new Australians into the national fold got underway
The statuesque broadcaster Stephanie Brantz and the manly Ben Roberts-Smith, VC, (unless it was Hugh Jackman playing him) presided.
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull's speech, also at odds with all that militariness, was a kind of apt masterpiece of its genre. One theme was, sweetly, that the people there about to become Australians (and all the others taking that day's citizenship plunge) were honouring us by choosing to share our nation with us.
"Now today thousands of our friends and neighbours will honour us by becoming Australian citizens. They are volunteers. They have chosen to become Australian citizens. They are volunteers. They have chosen to become Australians. Most of us arrived here into the world [into Australia] screaming and squalling, conscripted into Australian citizenship. So we honour you, the volunteers at 400 ceremonies across the country, 16,000 new Australians, joining our 24 million-strong family."
The PM also managed in his speech to make ours sound like a terrific, worthwhile little country without there ever being a swaggering oi oi oi anywhere between his lines. Nor did he (Molly and I were both braced for such a horror) make any allusions to our glorious military past.
But he, the PM, did allow us to have some tickets on ourselves. He bragged, modestly, that in joining our family on this continent the volunteers were joining "a nation as old as humanity itself" given that the first Australians have been here for 40,000 years.
One of those joining our ancient nation on Tuesday was Cynthia Jackson, until Tuesday's ceremony a citizen of the United States. We took her aside to talk to her. We thought it might be no small thing for someone from the USA, where patriotism is such a cultivated virtue, to lay aside citizenship of God's chosen country.
"Yes we Americans are patriotic and yes, this has been difficult in a way, but now I've lived here 30 years and I love this country," she told us.
"I'm from the US. From California. I met my husband, an Australian, at the University of California. He was studying to get his Ph D in environmental management and I was studying political science and we met in a statistics class. That was in 1980, and I followed him out here. And I love this country. I love this people."
She and her husband are Canberrans and run an environmental management consultancy.
As well as just having been handed her certificate by the PM and having just had a leisurely post-ceremony chat with Lucy Turnbull, she'd already found it "amazing that [in Canberra] you can run into the PM in an unofficial capacity, in a park, in a cafe".
That kind of thing is she thinks enormously to the credit of Australia, and of Canberra.
"You couldn't do that in the USA," the new Australian marvelled.
And then Australians, brand-new and old-established, streamed away across Commonwealth Park, still marvelling at new Australian Diego Torre's resuscitation of a national anthem that had all but given up the ghost.