Choir singing in the streets of Gothenburg, Sweden © Jonas Persson

Building Community One Song at a Time

World Singing Day leads a worldwide movement in community singing on Oct. 16, 2021

International Choral Scene

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In Perth, Australia, thousands of people gather in Yagan Square to sing popular songs together.

In the United Kingdom, mass karaoke breaks out in pubs from London to Liverpool.

“Beer choirs” are increasing across the United States, while over 200,000 Belgians gather in cities each summer to belt out songs, from ABBA to the Beatles. 

Every nation, region, and perhaps even village has its own singing traditions…

...but every year, on the third Saturday of October, people from all over the world - despite their different nationalities, cultures, and languages - come together to sing in honor of World Singing Day and to celebrate the passion, as well as humanity, they share beyond physical borders.

The uniting power of singing

This is a musical movement that has nothing to do with competition or performance.

It is a movement that directly dialogues with how our ancient ancestors used to gather around the fire to share stories and songs.

Founded in 2012 in Boulder, Colorado, by musician Scott Johnson, World Singing Day invites people from around the globe to gather, putting aside their differences in order to sing together and to experience a human connection with one another - a connection that modern men seem to forget at times.

“Every day on TV and social media, we see images of humans at their worst,” says Johnson. “This often disconnects us from one another and blinds us to the fact that we’re all part of a global family sharing the same planet. But imagine if all of us actually felt connected to this global family. Imagine millions of people in all 196 countries singing on the same day in the spirit of our common humanity. Imagine a global wave of singing, starting in New Zealand and going west around the world for 24 hours.”

Research has shown that group singing breaks the ice and forges social bonds quicker than anything else. And there is more: people singing together not only harmonize their voices, they also synchronize their heartbeats!

Johnson therefore concludes: “Unlike politics and religion, music has the unique power to bring people together from all backgrounds and beliefs.”

Take part in World Singing Day

Participation on Oct. 16 can range from singing with friends and family at home to inviting the whole community to gather in the town center to sing local favorite songs. In Boulder, Colorado, for instance, over a thousand people gather in the center of the city and sing along to the original recordings of songs, from the Beatles and Sinatra to Katy Perry and Bruno Mars. Lyric booklets are provided.

“Everyone can sing,” asserts Johnson, “and World Singing Day is a global community-building event where everyone is invited to participate and sing their hearts out”, in any way they want!

Read more about the event and participation details here.

Happy World Singing Day!

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