“This has become the need of the hour. When the entire world is struggling because of the pandemic, we, as artists, must come together to make life’s journey a little smoother for everyone else,” says Dr Maya Mascarenhas, Founder, and Director of Bangalore Chorus, a choir group that is spreading the message of hope and peace throughout the world.
And that’s exactly what her entire group is doing, very successfully, in a video showcasing all 135 members of Bangalore Chorus harmonising to ‘Hum Honge Kamyab’.
Posted with a caption ‘Here to sing your blues away and send peace to all the world’s families’, this video is garnering likes and comments from across the world for its infectious spirit across various social media channels.
“This is usually the time of the year when we get together and practice for our concerts but with the COVID-19 outbreak, we were all stuck at home and with the kids’ exams postponed, we were brainstorming ways to keep them engaged. That’s how we came up with the idea of doing a virtual concert,” says Maya.
She composed a medley of the songs ‘Peace in our hearts’ and the classic ‘Hum Honge Kamyab’. She then divided the harmonies and sent them to her choir members asking them to send in videos of themselves singing the parts.
Surprisingly, the entire choir sent in their videos the very next day.
“The WhatsApp group was flooded with videos. We didn’t wait any longer. My husband and I pulled out our keyboard and guitar and added music to the song. With the help of our friends, Eric Samuel and Harris Backer, we put together the entire song and voila!” she says.
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Started as the Bangalore Children’s Chorus in 2016 with just 60 children from different parts of Bengaluru, this choir is now known as the ‘Bangalore Chorus’ and includes 110 children and 25 adults. The youngest member of the choir is 4 years old, while the eldest is 70.
“The choir’s philosophy is essentially ‘children for children’. In a span of three years, we’ve conducted several concerts across Bengaluru and raised more than Rs. 35 lakh for underprivileged children,” explains Maya.
The chorus has performed at various orphanages, old age homes, palliative centres and even pulled off a flash mob at the Bengaluru International airport, for Christmas.
With the complexity of the different parts involved in this video – soprano, bass, treble, and alto, the choir managed to send it their parts and compile them within a week’s time.
Although many bands and choirs across the world have been showcasing virtual concerts and songs, the Bangalore Chorus was the first choir in India to create a one-of-a-kind virtual choir experience during the pandemic.
Encouraged by the overwhelming response from netizens across the world, the choir is preparing for their second virtual concert on the theme of friendship.
“It has been a week since the country has been in lockdown. So many people are anxious – about their health, their jobs, and lack of basic supplies. And the poor and migrant populations are struggling for their lives. During such a grim time, we hope that our music can bring peace and meaning to many lives,” she concludes.
(Edited by Saiqua Sultan)