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  1. 1. Eric Whitacre
  2. 2. composer conductor innovator
  3. 3. “Whitacre is that rare thing, a modern composer who is both popular and original.” - The Daily Telegraph, London
  4. 4. “Eric Whitacre is one of the most widelyperformed and popular composers of our time, a distinguished conductor, innovator, broadcaster and charismatic public speaker. His first album as both composer and conductor on Decca/Universal, Light & Gold, won a Grammy® in 2012, reaped unanimous five star reviews and became the no. 1 classical album in the US and UK charts within a week of release. His second album, Water Night, was released on Decca in April 2012 and debuted at no. 1 in the iTunes and Billboard classical chart on the day of release. The album features seven world premiere recordings and includes performances from his professional choir, the Eric Whitacre Singers, the London Symphony Orchestra, Julian Lloyd Webber and Hila Plitmann. In November 2013, he released his first EP on vinyl featuring his choral cover of Depeche Mode‟s “Enjoy the Silence”. His compositions are heard on multiple other recordings performed by artists across the globe.” Source –
  5. 5. “His ground-breaking Virtual Choir, “Lux Aurumque”, received over a million views on YouTube in just 2 months (now over 4 million) and features 185 singers from 12 different countries. Virtual Choir 2.0, “Sleep”, was released in April 2011 and involved over 2,000 voices from 58 countries. Virtual Choir 3, “Water Night”, received 3,746 submissions from 73 counties and launched at Lincoln Center, New York and was revealed online in April 2012. The latest, Virtual Choir 4: “Fly to Paradise”, released in July 2013, received over 8,400 submissions from 101 countries and launched at the Coronation Festival at Buckingham Palace/BBC 1.” Source –
  6. 6. New Media Innovator Eric Whitacre has taken full advantage of online media and maintains a presence on the following platforms in addition to his own personal website. Instagram YouTube SoundCloud Vimeo Twitter Facebook ALLMUSIC Kickstarter MySpace Flickr
  7. 7. THE VIRTUAL CHOIRS The Virtual Choirs began when a fan of Eric‟s music recorded a video of herself singing „Sleep‟ and shared it on YouTube. Inspired by the spirit of her performance Eric responded by asking his online fans to purchase Polyphony‟s recording of „Sleep‟, record themselves singing along to it, and upload the result. The videos were edited together and Eric was so impressed by the result that he decided to record himself conducting Lux Arumque, and asked Virtual Choir members to sing along to that. The resulting audio and video produced the very first Virtual Choir. Now with more than six million views collectively on three virtual choir productions the VC phenomenon has reached all corners of the world, inspiring more and more singers to join each year. The VC has grown from 185 singers in VC1 to an amazing 5,903 singers and 8,400 videos for VC4 Source –
  8. 8. On Line Community Eric Whitacre‟s virtual communities exist on Facebook, Twitter and the other on-line platforms creating virtual forums for fans, singers, conductors and other musicians to interact and share information. The Eric Whitacre website provides an online forum full of information and interaction. Users connect around music, auditions, experiences as choral performers, the virtual choirs, choral coaching, repertoire and other subjects of interest to them. The forum creates a rich environment where sharing occurs on many levels by people who love of classical choral music around the world. The online environment allows people who enjoy music from all walks of life to come together and share their common love of music and choral singing.
  9. 9. The Audience Consisting of choral performers, musicians and those who love classical music, Eric Whitacre‟s audience enjoys multiple platforms which they can use to interact with each other and the composer himself. Whitacre has successfully used new technologies and the digital realm to bring classical musicians together, promote his work and bring choral music to the online world.
  10. 10. Shareable Content Videos of performances, recording sessions, auditions, virtual choir updates, introductions to new choral works. Listings of scores for choral and orchestral ensembles. Musical scores and recording purchase. SoundCloud recordings of entire works, plus sectionals* which can be used by singers preparing for performances. Postings from fans, collaborators, singers and musicians. News updates about future performances, recording sessions, talks, virtual choir auditions. Polls about next virtual choir repertoire. *sectionals are recorded single parts of an ensemble score, in choral music terms this is the individual soprano, alto, tenor or, bass parts recorded separately
  11. 11. Fan Engagement Whitacre engages with fans by effectively using technology to bridge the gap than exists between composer and performer. Using his charismatic personality, good looks and savvy media presence, Whitacre manages to bring the „cool factor‟ to classical music. He clearly understands the power of image and exploits it to it‟s full potential. By engaging directly with fans and performers of his works via social media platforms, Whitacre becomes accessible and makes the music making a collaborative affair with stunning results.
  12. 12. Interacting in multiple spheres Whitacre‟s success depends upon large bodies of choral singers to bring his compositions to life. This creates an imperative for overlap between the on-line and real world environment. His continual outreach to choral singers via social media platforms, combined with regular workshop tours, public speaking engagements, engaging and relaxed video presentations, TED talks and guest conducting gigs, requires Whitacre to move seamlessly between the on-line and real world spheres.
  13. 13. Timing is Everything Eric Whitacre (or his online media machine support staff) make regular and consistent posts to Twitter and his various Facebook pages (Eric Whitacre, The Eric Whitacre Singers, Eric Whitacre‟s Virtual Choir). A blog, featured on his website is updated regularly with information about compositions in the works, public speaking engagements, concerts, upcoming workshops, guest conducting appearances and virtual choir updates. Posting in a variety of forums and always in an accessible and casual tone, Eric Whitacre makes full use of on-line platforms to build his audience, fan base and brand. Whitacre successfully makes classical music contemporary bringing it into the 21st century virtual world, while maintaining it‟s deep roots in the history of the genre.
  14. 14. To learn more about Eric Whitacre visit
  15. 15. All photos in this presentation were sourced from Listen to more of Eric Whitacre‟s compositions on iTunes and SoundCloud
  16. 16. Click on the Mic to link to Eric Whitacre‟s Virtual Choir 4. Presented by T.Crawford February 2014