Place Bellecour in the middle of Lyon is one of the largest open squares in Europe. Last Sunday, it was filled with 32,000 hands stretching into the air and 16,000 voices singing: “You may say, I’m a dreamer.”
The rendition of John Lennon’s classic song was the culmination of the 17th Biennale de la Dance, a month-long celebration of dance in the heart of Lyon.
The communal singing of “Imagine” was led by the Orphéon*La Compagnie Vocale. A choir made up of over 200 singers from the region, under the direction of conductor Philippe Forget.
“Imagine is dedicated to the dream, the utopia, the peace. If we don’t have moments like this one, full of audience, full of singers, full of dancers, then I don’t know where dreams can live,” Philippe Forget told Euronews.
Some 16,000 people in the audience were taught dance moves so the moment could become truly communal. Those kind of experiences are very important to Philippe Forget:
“We need spaces like this. By singing imagine we are able to sing together with all of the audience. And that coming together is magnificent.”