WATCH: Bethlehem Sings ‘Hallelujah’ with Choir!Choir!Choir!
On Friday night, hundreds of patrons to Levitt Pavilion SteelStacks were treated to a very special performance… from themselves.
This is what Toronto-based duo Choir!Choir!Choir! brings to communities internationally. Musicians Daveed Goldman and Nobu Adilman founded the project as a weekly drop-in singing event in February 2011, combining music, comedy, and community. The duo has since begun taking their show on the road, coming to Bethlehem on Friday night and bringing out many of the Valley’s distinct voices for a night of song.
The song in particular? Leonard Cohen’s classic, the oft-covered “Hallelujah.” The evening started with vocal warmups before breaking into rehearsal, during which Goldman and Adilman split the audience to work, verse-by-verse, on two-part harmonies. Then, as each verse was completed, it was put together with the one that preceded it, until the masterpiece was eventually complete.
There was no way to gauge the musical experience of those in the audience that night. However, two things I took away as this came together, as an ex-choir boy: 1) many of those in attendance must have had some already-developed musical chops, because they generally picked things up with relative ease, and 2) I had forgotten how much constructing a large group performance could bring folks from all walks of life together. It was refreshing, in this polarized age, to see total strangers congregating to participate.
The finished product is below. Have a look and a listen!