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Classical / Pop

Multi-screen, multi-confinement

by Alain Brunet

All over the world, musicians compete in creativity and perform works of different styles. Those video recordings respect the precautions necessary to flatten the propagation curve of COVID-19. Here is a first overview of these performances, mainly in the territories of classical music and classical pop. Please note that the descriptions of those videos are written by their producers.

” With this video, the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal and Kent Nagano wish to thank from the bottom of their hearts, all those in Quebec who provide essentials services and take care of us all every day. Work: Sicilienne, op. 78 by Gabriel Fauré. Réalisation Orchestre symphonique de Montréal avec Carl Talbot (Musicom) et Jean-Marc Abela.”

Pub Choir, Australia. “We can still be together, even though we are apart. Over 6000 strangers from 45 countries submitted a video in 3 days to sing 1 song. It’s dedicated to all the frontline heroes who are keeping us safe. Thanks for covering some David Bowie with us, accompanied by Waveney Yasso on guitar. And thanks to Paris from Sleepy Mountain Films for this HUGE edit. You can support our work by sharing the video or by visiting our website: www.pubchoir.com.au Until the next singalong (we’ll let you know when we’re good and ready!)… With love, Astrid and team Couch Choir.”

Orchestre Métropolitain, Montréal. “Orchestre Métropolitain (OM) joins forces with poet and singer-songwriter Gilles Vigneault, an iconic figure in Quebec and one of the most honoured artists here and elsewhere in the French-speaking world, to offer you a unique and touching anthem. Opening with a short poem addressed to the people here in these exceptional circumstances, Mr. Vigneault lends his song “Les gens de mon pays” to the OM and its conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin, performed by remote musicians in an orchestration by Léon Bernier. Through this music, we wish to bring to you a message of solidarity, hope and goodwill… from our family to yours. It should be noted that Mr. Vigneault was a member of the very first OM Board of Directors. “There is no song of mine/ That isn’t made up / With your words, your steps / With your music I hear you playing / I hear you singing / I hear you walking / And it’s going to be okay.” – Gilles Vigneault, poet, singer, lyricist (April 2020)

Ekuan Pua & friends

Orchestre National de France “While waiting to see you again in the delicate period we are going through, the musicians of the Orchestre National de France wanted, despite the distance, to play together, and share with everyone what they know best: music. Hoping that these few, universal notes by Ravel will bring you a little warmth and comfort.” Credits: Didier Benetti, arrangements; Dimitri Scapolan, production

I cori Lavinium and SingUp! from Rome, virtually join together during this covid-19 quarantine period to sing Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah. Not being able to do live concerts, this seemed to be the best way to stay together in music. The piece is the result of a collage of the singers’ voices from the individual videos in the virtual choir mosaic. Artistic director and audio-video processing by Fabrizio Vestri. The Rome choirs Lavinium and SingUp! are meeting virtually in this quarantine time to sing together Leonard Cohen’s Halleluja.”

Orchestre national de Lyon. “Musicians from l’Orchestre national de Lyon spontaneously set themselves a little challenge during the confinement period: to play a piece together! Well, just 26 or them, because at 104, it would have been a bit complicated. A little message from them: Among the friends of l’Orchestre national de Lyon, we were starting to miss playing together, so we made do with the means at hand! Hopefully, this little musical contribution will bring a bit of sweetness and good humour into your homes while confined.” Music: Georges Bizet, L’Arlésienne

Colorado Symphony : “Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony is an ode to humanity, to peace over desperation, to universal kinship and, of course, to joy. We hope that this small tribute stands as a reminder that community is powerful and together, despite the anxiety and separation, we will come back stronger than before.”

Rotterdams Philharmonisch Orkest“From us, for you. We’re adjusting to a new reality and we’ll have to find solutions in order to support each other. Creative forces help us, let’s think outside of the box and use innovation to keep our connection and make it work, together. Because if we do it together, we’ll succeed.”

Choeur des Jeunes de Laval, Québec – L’amitié by Françoise Hardy

Andrew Wan (OSM) & Jonathan Crow (TSO): “Two provinces, two orchestras, two concertmasters—one beautiful musical gift! Concertmasters Andrew Wan (Orchestre symphonique de Montréal) and Jonathan Crow (Toronto Symphony Orchestra) perform the second movement from Sonata in E Minor, No. 5 for Two Violins by Jean-Marie Leclair. “

CORONA- Parody LLORONA, Angélica Vale & Marco Antonio Solís. Mexico & Switzerland. “With the voices of: Xavier Alfonso Paul Berrocal Marzia Celii Didier Coenegracht Henri Dès Stephan Eicher Valleria Estrella Françoise Gautier Salma Iagrouni Faustine Jenny Mark Kelly Vincent Kucholl Yann Marguet Virginia Markus Ella Malherbe Mila de Meyer Jubelin Shania Twain Vincent Veillon Yves Ali Zahno Bo Zhao. Video direction: Cee-Roo, Music Producer: Chris Matthey, Royal Studios, Original Music: La Llorona, Angélica Vale, Marco Antonio Solís. 120 minutes, RTS (Swiss Radio Television)”

Thelma Yellin High School, Israël: “Under the coronavirus siege in Israel, all students of the classical music department at the Thelma Yellin high school in Israel recorded their parts for Mendelssohn’s Psalm 42 using their smartphones while at home. Thelma Yellin Symphony Orchestra conducted by Guy Feder Thelma Yellin Choir conducted by Yishai Steckler Head of classical music department: Moshe Aharonov Production: Jonathan Kurilan Sound engineering: Yaron Aldema Video editing: Maayan Franco and Yoel Culiner Artistic director and conductor: Yishai Steckler”

Forestare, Montréal, Québec: Jean Baptiste Lully (1632-1687), Le Bourgeois gentilhomme (comedy-ballet), “Marche pour la cérémonie des Turcs”, arr. Dave Pilon, audiovisual editing : Olivier Labossière.

Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra & Edmonton Symphony Orchestra: “Elgar’s Nimrod Variation IX from the Enigma Variations – this is a joint effort between musicians of the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, wishing health and care to the people of Alberta, and around the world. We hope this music fills you up – We miss being in the concert hall, and look forward to seeing you there again when things return to normal. Musicians: Conductor. Janna Sailor Fl. Sara Hahn, Stephanie Morin Ob. Elisabeth Mellinger, Dan Waldron Cl. Juilianne Scott Bsn. Bianca Chambul, Michael Hope Hn. Rob McCosh, Jennifer Frank, Heather Wooton, Maxwell Stein Tpt. Adam Zinatelli, Matthew Ross Bone Dave Reid Tuba Tom McCaslin Timp. Alex Cohen Vn.1 Donovan Seidle, Erica Hudson, John Lowry Vn.2 Stephanie Soltice-Johnson, Adriana Lebedovich, Erin Burkholder, Steve Lubiarz, Craig Hutchenreuther Vla. Arthur Bachman Vcl. Rafael Hoekman, Meran Currie-Roberts Kb. Patrick Staples, Trish Beretti Reid, Matt Heller Project leads: Donovan Seidle, Adriana Lebedovich, Genevieve Micheletti Made using DaVinci Resolume, Logic Pro X, Vienna Instruments MIR Pro… and many (and varied) recording devices.”

Baltimore Symphony Orchestra: “Watch as the BSO musicians virtually perform the final moments of Mahler’s Third Symphony, a piece that features significant orchestral forces. The Orchestra was able to rehearse the great masterwork, but unable to perform it in scheduled concerts March 12-14 as the performances were cancelled due to COVID-19. The musicians of the Baltimore Symphony were disappointed that they were unable to perform the work and decided to create a virtual performance. Principal Tuba Aubrey Foard said, “We thought Mahler’s glorious and life-affirming coda from this symphony would help everyone feel a little better, knowing that the BSO is with them even when we’re all separated by physical distance.” Each musician recorded their individual part of the final moments of the symphony at home. The video was produced and edited by BSO Violist Colin Sorgi, who created a click track for each musician to play along to while recording their part. The click track allowed the piece to move with tempo changes as it would in a live performance. Each musician employed two devices; one to play the click track and another device to record both video and audio. Visit bsomusic.org/offstage for more great content.”

The Jerusalem Street Orchestra playing Mozart together from their homes during the Coronavirus outbreak. Wishing you all the best of health! Sound engineering – Yuval Amit Video editing – Culiner Creative Circle.”

International Opera Choir, Rome. “The critical situation in which we find ourselves has profoundly changed the daily life of each one of us, forcing to stay at home to counter the health emergency. Even the world of theatre and music is feeling the effects of this situation, and musicians, singers, conductors, etc. are paying a huge price for being unable to work. They are forced to cancel shows and concerts, which is an economic and moral damage that cannot be quantified. The International Opera Choir – Coro Internazionale Lirico Sinfonico, like other choral groupas, has suspended its activities in accordance with the decree in force. We have therefore opened the doors of our virtual rehearsal room that each of us has ‘reached’ with the means available, equipped with smartphones and our voices, to feel closer to you through music . Thanks to Mr. Giovanni Mirabile, to the artists of the choir who were able to participate, and to the creative team behind this video: Raffaella Baioni, Project Manager; Giovanni Marucci. President of the “Frequencies & Harmonics” Association; Paolo Annunziato, Mixing Engineer and Video Editor; Virginia Cirillo, Content Creator.”

Valentin Vander “100% Confinement Video. Valentin Vander brought together 45 musicians and singers from their places of confinement, to perform this sublime song immortalized by Bourvil in 1963. The audio and video recordings were made with the means at hand, and the whole thing was carried out entirely on a voluntary basis, in support of the victims of the Covid-19 pandemic. Editing process: I sent the guitar solo and guitar/voice track to the musicians and singer who responded to my call. I asked them to add their voices or instrumental part (through the whole song), film themselves, and to try to capture the cleanest possible sound and image. No more artistic indication, trusting the creativity of my friends!”

The Orchestra at The Phantom Of The Opera in London saw a Tweet from Andrew Lloyd Webber playing “All I Ask Of You” from isolation. As a response to this, every member of the orchestra individually contributed a video, audio or photo from isolation to show their support and respect for Andrew.

Camden Voices, UK: In a time of physical isolation, we believe more than ever in creating new ways to stay in touch and keep doing the things we love. So, with that in mind, here is our first ever virtual performance of the gorgeous True Colours, recorded straight from our own homes. We hope it brings some happiness and calm in these crazy times When coronavirus hit the UK, our rehearsals, concerts and tours were cancelled- and, like everyone, we were each stuck in isolation at home. Many of our choir members had travelled back to their home countries to be with family and loved ones. After the initial shock, we became determined to refocus our energy and create something positive and inspirational for each other and our community. This video shows what can happen when we work together, and how we can overcome obstacles with technology and our imagination. It is 28 individual videos, submitted from all over the world, combined into one- a truly international collaboration that shows the power of music in our lives. Thanks for watching- please give this video a thumbs up, leave a comment below and don’t forget to subscribe for new videos. “

Socially Distant Orchestra Plays Ode to Joy can musicians do when they’re quarantined / sheltering in place? They stay close through music. PS: Watch a different person each time, and try to find the cats! Next one: https://youtu.be/kayw0iXoK7g

Socially Distant Orchestra (New York City) plays Dvořák’s “New World”.We don’t have to know each other but we can still connect through music. Have a restful and safe weekend, everyone.

Pub Choir , Australia . “A few days ago we asked the internet to stop misery scrolling for a moment, and to sing with us! Over 1000 people from 18 countries submitted a video of their performance of “Close To You” (The Carpenters) in just TWO DAYS. Every submission that we successfully received was manually added to the collective. And then we saw the magic unfold… Plug in those earphones and turn this up. We can’t adequately express in words what a gift your videos were to us. Each was like unwrapping a beautiful, personal, virtual hug. Thanks for trusting us with your voices, and for sharing your lives with us for a few minutes. We really hope the result gives you something to smile about. We’d love you to share it far and wide (please note, we won’t ask you to make it viral…) Special thanks to Sleepy Mountain Films for this incredible edit. Until our next Couch Choir session… Pub Choir”

The Children’s Voice Chorus, Florida. “Voice of Miami girls couldn’t rehearse in person because of the Coronavirus situation, so we decided to send some love out to the virtual world by dusting off an old song that means a lot to us. Here’s our first try at a virtual choir with Bridge Over Troubled Water arranged by Kirby Shaw. Singing in a choir requires active listening, blending, cutting off together, and so much more. As we approach this new way of making music, we will be challenged to hone our individual skills to maximize our #virtualchoir blend and sound. Nothing can replace making music together in person, but until then, let’s #keepthemusicgoing friends.”

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