Making Stuff You Love Pt. 5.

This is Eric Whitacre and his Virtual Choir #4. He’s been doing this since 2009. For me, though, it started here.

By the time I learned of Eric Whitacre and his virtual choir he was working with Virtual Choir 3. This time he’d assembled 3,746 videos from 73 different countries. That alone is enough to make music geek – technology nerd me want to know more. He’s creating a choir based upon individually submitted videos from people in 73 countries? You have my attention.

But then. The stories. These 3,746 videos from 73 countries belong to people. People who wanted to be a part of something bigger than themselves for the joy of saying “I did that. I made that.”

  • A legally blind man who has never been able to sing in a choir because he couldn’t see the conductor. With the Virtual Choir he was able to get close enough to the screen to see me conducting and join the choir for the first time.
  • A woman in Zululand (Southern Africa) who had no internet access in her village. She spent two days uploading her video over her mobile phone.
  • A woman who sat with her dying mother in hospice, gently holding her hand just offscreen while she recorded her video.

Virtual Choir 4 has 8,409 video submissions, more than doubling the numbers from 101 countries. As much as I love the song and the production, I love the idea of the stories behind it more.

Make stuff you love. Who it impacts and how is out of your control. Just know this: If Eric Whitacre hadn’t shared his idea with others a legally blind man might never have been able to join a choir. And I might never have discovered songs and stories that give me chills. Every time.

Eric Whitacre’s TED Talk about Virtual Choir 3

Virtual Choir 3 performing Water Night

More on Virtual Choir 4 (+ choirs 1 and 2)

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