“Music expresses that which cannot be put into words, and that which cannot remain silent.”
– Victor Hugo
“I don’t know if it is a spiritual, physiological or psychological phenomenon, but I believe now more than ever that singing is a universal, built-in mechanism designed to cultivate empathy and compassion.”
– Eric Whitacre
Eric Whitacre is one of the world’s most renowned classical composers.
A dashing 45 years old, he hails from Reno, Nevada, and had originally planned on becoming a pop artist before having a transformative experience singing Mozart for the first time in a college class. Eric became enamored with, and began writing pieces for, orchestra and symphony and – most especially – for choir. Since then, he has gone on to win a Grammy, top the Classical music charts, and be performed more widely than any other living composer.
Even so, I only recently discovered Eric Whitacre and his amazing work – I was introduced by a video of the TED talk he gave back in 2011 where he discusses his incredible project which he calls the “virtual choir”.
Inspired by a fan’s singing on a video, Eric decided that he was going to take conducting to a global scale. He invited singers to submit videos of themselves performing parts of one of his pieces. In compiling them together into one video, he created a virtual choir. He has now done this 4 times. The result is both astonishing and inspiring.
Check it out (be warned – the video is almost 15 minutes long, but it’s 100% worth every second): Continue reading