Global choir

Have you heard the virtual choir that Eric Whitacre assembled to perform his piece ‘Lux aurumque’ on YouTube?  He got 185 singers from 12 countries to post  clips of their parts, and then made a ‘choir’ out of them.  The sound is rather lovely, and you can see the individuals on screen as the camera pans across. 

Apparently, Whitacre adjusted each clip to scrub out the adjacent noises and to blend the voices better.  It’s what goes on in music production anyway – a kind of tonal airbrushing.  I like the idea of people from all over the world being able to join together to create music, and you can see the intense involvement on their faces.

Whenever I’ve sung in a choir, though, I’ve intuitively responded to the people and their voices around me – and perhaps to the atmosphere of the place where I’m singing.  I guess I’m struggling again with the question of how important it is to be physically present with other people for beauty, grace, spiritual connection (see earlier post ‘From the comfort of your home)

And the music does sound just a bit too perfect …

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2 Responses to Global choir

  1. Eamonn says:

    I take the point about physical presence and atmosphere (as one who has frequently ‘leeched’ off the more competent singer next to me!), but I must say I found the concept and the execution tremendously moving.

  2. Ann Lees says:

    I heard a piece on the Today programme before the recording/launch took place. Yes, it’s a fine thing, very Web 2.0 – or not, since the contributors had no power to affect the final outcome after uploading their recording. But it isn’t a choir!
    As one suffering as secretary of a very non-virtual choir, I can spot the difference. And I don’t know that I’m interested in hearing it, really. Why not pay professional singers and mash their recordings up? Or make it more like ‘found’ art, take random recordings of sounds at different pitches and construct a reocrding out of that?

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