SportsLeader is a virtue-based mentoring and motivation program for coaches. This blog shares stories from coaches all over the country transforming lives. For more information contact Lou Judd -

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

A Random Act of Culture

Part of the mission of SportsLeader is to transform the culture of sports. Here is an event that has little to do with athletics but is an awesome example of thinking outside the box to serve others ...

Imagine being in Macy's shopping for a shirt when all of a sudden the guy standing next to you starts belting out "Hallelujah" ... he scares you to death ... you look around and there is a lady at Makeup doing the same, a young man at Shoes, a young lady at Sportswear ... little by little more people are singing ... you start humming ... and by the end of the song you are belting it out too ...

I'd like to think that our virtuous testimony is similar ... we might scare others at first but little by little more and more people join in ... and are happier because of it.

My brother currently lives in Philadelphia ... I was trying to picture him being in the middle of this ...

On Saturday, October 30, 2010, the Opera Company of Philadelphia brought together over 650 choristers from 28 participating organizations to perform one of the Knight Foundation's "Random Acts of Culture" at Macy's in Center City Philadelphia. 

Accompanied by the Wanamaker Organ - the world's largest pipe organ - the OCP Chorus and throngs of singers from the community infiltrated the store as shoppers, and burst into a pop-up rendition of the Hallelujah Chorus from Handel's "Messiah" at 12 noon, to the delight of surprised shoppers. 

This event is one of 1,000 "Random Acts of Culture" to be funded by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation over the next three years. 

The initiative transports the classical arts out of the concert halls and opera houses and into our communities to enrich our everyday lives. To learn more about this program and view more events, visit

The Opera Company thanks Macy's and the Friends of the Wanamaker Organ ( for their partnership, as well as Organ Music Director Peter Conte and Fred Haas, accompanists; OCP Chorus Master Elizabeth Braden, conductor; and Sound Engineer James R. Stemke. 

For a complete list of participating choirs and more information, visit This event was planned to coincide with the first day of National Opera Week.

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