Featuring 2052 performances from singers in 58 countries, the Virtual Choir 2.0 – singing Whitacre’s “Sleep” – is the largest assembled online in history, and far surpasses Whitacre’s original goal of 900 voices.
The Virtual Choir began in May 2009 as a simple experiment in social media, when Britlin Losee – a fan of Eric’s music – recorded a video of herself singing “Sleep” and shared it on YouTube.
After watching the video, Eric responded by sending a call out to his online fans to purchase Polyphony’s recording of “Sleep”, record themselves singing along to it, and upload the result.
Scott Haines generously volunteered to cut the video together. Eric was so impressed by the result that he decided to push the concept to the next level by recording himself conducting “Lux Aurumque”, and asked Virtual Choir members to sing along to that. Once again, Scott edited the audio and video.
Virtual Choir 1.0 received over 1 million hits in the first two months of its release.
Ever ambitious, for this latest Virtual Choir project Eric called for 900 singers to record themselves singing “Sleep”. At the final tally he received 2052 contributions from singers in 58 countries.
Upon previewing the video at TED 2011, Eric (and the choir) received two standing ovations – testimony to the power of the internet to connect people of all backgrounds and abilities and create something beautiful across time and space.
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