I’ve written before about just how much I love Choir!Choir!Choir! — and last month I finally had the chance to attend one of their rehearsals. Rehearsals. Or shows as they call them.

When I stepped through the door of the Aladdin Theater on Inauguration Day, I had no idea that the day after Choir!Choir!Choir! and Sing Portland! would join forces to sing at the Women’s March.

I had decided to attend the Choir!Choir!Choir! rehearsal out of curiosity as a fellow singer, choir director, and person who brings people together through song, and I honestly wasn’t sure what to expect. I had seen them on YouTube singing with hundreds and even thousands of people in different settings, but I wasn’t sure how the evening was going to play out. After all, bringing 300 strangers together and getting them to sing seems a bit daunting.

I shouldn’t have worried.

We were all immediately put at ease by Daveed and Nobu’s silliness. They laughed and joked with us and each other, and almost without realizing it we all rolled into learning Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah. The group was invited to come to the front of the theater so we could stand on the dance floor instead of sit in chairs, and with Nobu’s super basic, easy-to-understand conducting, we were off and singing in no time. Now I get why they call their rehearsals shows; they’re so entertaining!

I was so happy to see how easily everything seemed to come together, because I share a similar philosophy and method with Daveed and Nobu — I’ve taken a grand total of one class in choral conducting, and that, along with a two week course in Community Choir Leadership is what I steer my singing ship by. But as I’ve seen with Sing Portland! and now also with Choir!Choir!Choir!, that and passion for what you’re doing, is all you need.

Then things got even more amazing.

After we pulled off Hallelujah (directed by Nobu’s swaying head and loose hips), Daveed and Nobu told us that they were really impressed by the Portland singers, so much so that they did a live recording of us on Facebook! (You can see it here.)

And then, after a few whispers between the two of them right there on stage, they shared that the next day was their day off during their west coast tour, and asked us if we would be interested in singing with them at the Women’s March … and the entire audience screamed yes!

And so we did — twice!

We all came together and sang Hallelujah, first at Director’s Park, and then again one block away from the rally. It was an incredible experience, not to mention a really great reminder of just what a powerful force for connection music can be. We came away renewed, energized, and ready to go out and build bridges over the divisions that have been so highlighted in our country over the past months.

Want to experience that kind of connection for yourself? We’d love to have you! Click here to find out how and when you can sing with us.