Watch: Eric Whitacre's Virtual Choir 6: "Sing Gently"

Eric Whitacre's Virtual Choir 6: Sing Gently

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Presented in part by The NAMM Foundation, Virtual Choir 6: "Sing Gently," an original composition from Eric Whitacre, recently made its global premier. Whitacre, who is one of the world's most performed composers, was inspired to write the piece by the breadth of the pandemic and its effect on society. Turning to music as solace, "Sing Gently" welcomed 17,572 singers from 129 countries, aged 5–88, who recorded their videos to be combined to form Virtual Choir 6. Together, they found strength in the simple, collective initiative of the project and saw it as a way to not only replenish from within but also to offer hope and relief for the sadness and suffering of others.

"With everyone unexpectedly far apart from each other, I found myself thinking about the virtues of empathy, community, and service, and a new Virtual Choir felt like a deeply human way to address all of those virtues," says Whitacre. "I tried as best I could to keep the lyrics of 'Sing Gently' straightforward and unadorned to say what I felt needed to be said simply."

"Sing Gently" marks Whitacre's largest Virtual Choir to date since his first more than ten years ago. The film will include videos from each of the participants, unified in a unique collection, which serves as a testament to diversity, accessibility and inclusivity to be much more than a musical project—it's a community.