MANILA – The pandemic has inspired alumni of two-time Choir of the World champion, the University of Santo Tomas Singers, to perform individually from their respective homes around the globe, this time, for a cause.
While it can be difficult to continue creating wonderful music at a time when hundreds of thousands are dying of a contagion in more than 180 countries, the award-winning choir brings hope and positivity through their rendition of the song “Isang Dugo, Isang Lahi, Isang Musika” (One Blood, One Race, One Music).
“The alumni of the UST Singers from all over the globe gather together to voice out our valiant song of hope and unity and spread inspiration,” UST Singers Conductor, Prof. Fidel Gener Calalang Jr., said at the beginning of the viral video, which now has nearly 4,000 shares and 5,000 likes on Facebook in a span of a little more than 24 hours.
Former UST Singers member Vincent Evangelista, now based in Houston, Texas, said the song is a special tribute to Filipinos, especially front-liners and essential workers.
“It started as katuwaan lang sana ng (something for fun by a) small group of alumni, then it became really big. We started doing this right after Holy Week. We thought that the song was fitting because, during these times, we Filipinos have to unite,” he said.
It is interesting to note that among the singers in the video, 25 are actual front-liners and essential workers themselves, including Evangelista.
For the song collaboration, about 96 choir alumni virtually reunited and gathered together in expressing solidarity through the song, with the aim of spreading love and kindness in these challenging times.
“Though the song is in Filipino, about Filipinos, and for Filipinos, it speaks universally because we are one human race. We included an English translation for it to be universally encompassing,” Evangelista said.
He said the choir was given the blessing to make its rendition by song composer, Mr. Dodjie Simon, and choral arranger, Dr. Joel Navarro.
Filipinos remain essentially under enhanced community quarantine and movements are restricted to prevent a further rise in infections.
While the virus has tried people’s souls, it has also drawn out the strength and resilience of the nation, he said.
Evangelista noted that the song seeks to lift a heavy mood.
“The song was from our hearts. Through this song, we hope we imparted our deepest gratitude and show everyone that we can get past this challenge,” he said. (PNA)