Hi, my name is Gina and I’m the originator and vision holder of 80,000 Voices, although in the whole scheme of things, maybe I should say that the vision came to me, or found its way to me in late 2009. In my vision I saw an event with 80,000 people coming together in a large stadium. It was a happening that was more than just people getting together to sing. They had a very important message to pass on to the rest of the world.
I could see an old man with a small child standing next to him, holding a bright coloured flag, both of them waving and jumping up and down with beaming faces. Then I saw many many thousands of young people, singing and dancing together to the sound of a thousand drums, some groups beat boxing, and rapping and doing stuff that my kids love. This was a vision that included everyone, and it was full of colour. I could sense a great sea of change in this gathering, and at the end of the day, people were leaving feeling moved to live their lives more creatively and happily with a greater sense of themselves and feel motivated as individuals to do more to build a new way of life in a land of peace.
So that was my vision. And it’s so big and ambitious that at times I have found myself on the floor feeling like a complete waste of space wondering how I am ever going to achieve such a stupidly large and over the top idea! But between then and now I have been on journey of discovery, the main discovery being that this idea will not go away! If I ignore it, it comes to visit me in dreams or in communications with others. Once I was in a gallery and I got talking to a complete stranger because he told me he was a barber singer. I told him about my vision and he took my card which he apparently handed on to a guy called Paul who was helping out at Making Music – an association with over 3,000 choir members (that’s 3,000 groups). When he contacted me I was transformed from a person of no hope to an unstoppable giant – he wanted to meet and talk about my idea !
Well that was in 2010 and since then the idea has kept living, and somehow I’ve kept working at it. It has grown in my mind to a regular event staged by a grass roots socially conscious group focused on community engagement. I want to put on a big event where people can express their views using art and music, a non-political but cultural voice. I want to convey a message of peace but I don’t want to do it in a cheesy, contained way. There are lot of excellent choirs with heart and soul but they are not edgy enough for me. I want to hear rhythms and kids beat boxing – I want my sons to think it is cool! I am inherently the same age as them (18 and 19) but I’m supposed to have all this wisdom and stuff!
Who am I? My background is that I am a singer-musician and song writer, and I have written a thesis on publishing. Just a few publishers own most of the songs in the world, did you know that? I would love 80,000 Voices to have a way of facilitating new songwriters.
So what’s the plan then? Our first large scale production is planned for summer 2016.
But for now, we have a question for you. What do you think about nuclear weapons? What do you think about nuclear energy in general?