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Life Arts

A Bottom Up Virtual Choir to Delight Your Heart and Milk Your Tears

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Eric Whitacre started out college wanting to be the fifth member of Depeche Mode. But he discovered choir and it changed his life.

Now Eric Whitacre  composes classical choral works of music. In a TED conference talk (I lasted about 3:45 minutes before my first tear,) he told an audience how a young women sang a portion of one of his works on youtube. It inspired him to try an experiment.  He would assemble a choir made up of youtube videos of people singing from all over the world.  

He created a soundless youtube video of him conducting a song, then made another with with a piano background for the song and made the music available.

Eventually, over 2050 people from over 50 countries created their own personal videos of their part of the song. Some of them did over 50 "takes" to get the recording they were satisfied with.

He was fortunate to get one volunteer to weave and "render' them all together. 

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Describing his experience coordinating this extraordinarily beautiful production, he described how he discovered, "Human beings will go to any lengths necessary to find and connect with each other. It doesn't matter the technology. People seemed to be experiencing an actual choir. They never met. I feel an esprit de corps."

Technologically, for the audo engineers reading this, he added, "With 2000 syncronized youtubes videos the render time is atrocious. " 



The TED video briefly shows his first experiment, then walks us through more on how he put a bigger project together and shows the first two minutes of the actual Bottom Up Virtual Choir.  Below that, you can listen to and view the full performance.  This new, extraordinary art form seems to be one more way for humanity to build bridges of connection between us. I'd love to see this kind of art included in movies and TV. Imagine James Cameron's sequel to Pandora with a choir of thousands creating the sound for his next 3-D adventure.

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And Here's the entire Performance:


This is an earlier Bottom up Virtual Choir Whitacre ... I'm not sure what to call it-- coordinate, created, recruited, assembled... Lux Aurumque
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Rob Kall has spent his adult life as an awakener and empowerer-- first in the field of biofeedback, inventing products, developing software and a music recording label, MuPsych, within the company he founded in 1978-- Futurehealth, and founding, organizing and running 3 conferences: Winter Brain, on Neurofeedback and consciousness, Optimal Functioning and Positive Psychology (a pioneer in the field of Positive Psychology, first presenting workshops on it in 1985) and Storycon Summit Meeting on the Art Science and Application of Story-- each the first of their kind. Then, when he found the process of raising people's consciousness and empowering them to take more control of their lives one person at a time was too slow, he founded Opednews.com-- which has been the top search result on Google for the terms liberal news and progressive opinion for several years. Rob began his Bottom-up Radio show, broadcast on WNJC 1360 AM to Metro Philly, also available on iTunes, covering the transition of our culture, business and world from predominantly Top-down (hierarchical, centralized, authoritarian, patriarchal, big) to bottom-up (egalitarian, local, interdependent, grassroots, archetypal feminine and small.) Recent long-term projects include a book, Bottom-up-- The Connection Revolution, debillionairizing the planet and the Psychopathy Defense and Optimization Project.

Rob Kall Wikipedia Page

Rob Kall's Bottom Up Radio Show: Over 200 podcasts are archived for downloading here, or can be accessed from iTunes. Rob is also published regularly on the Huffingtonpost.com

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