"Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much"
I am deeply delighted and appreciative of the opportunity to join a group of enthusiastic and passionate young people from Tzu Chi to work on a “special project”. The ultimate goal of the project is to compose an original song that Tzu Chi Singapore can use to publish as a token of appreciation to all medical frontliners who have been working relentlessly in the past few months to save and protect lives in the midst of fighting against Covid-19.
The goal is clear and meaningful, nonetheless, we had to face two major challenges. First of all, we love music but none of us are professional musicians. We were initially concerned about how feasible this project can be. We planned to seek help from the professionals in a music studio, but that brought us to the second challenge. Due to the Circuit Breaker (or “lockdown”) in Singapore for quite an extended period of time, we cannot have face-to-face meetings, therefore activities in the music studio cannot proceed. We have to wait until Circuit Breaker is over, or we have to find alternatives.
Despite our limited resources and skills, we had decided to proceed and just do our best. Over the past two to three months, face-to-face meetings were replaced with video teleconference calls. Voice recording, which was supposed to take place in a music studio, was replaced with recording at home, using mobile phones. We have a member who did the post-production with his little “home studio” and he has one of the toughest jobs indeed! We were a team of non-musicians passionately talking about music and vocal arrangement. When the going got tough, we were somehow reminded of the very initial objective of this project. “Let us do our best” seems to be an occasional inner voice that some of us begin to hear. That helped.
Very soon, the group grew from several people to twenty over people. Some were invited to contribute as singers, others were invited to perform “sign language”. Another equally challenging task was the video production towards the end of the project, and these members, too, deserve our respect. As of today when I am writing this, we are all looking forward to the official release of this piece of meaningful work that all of us have contributed in one way or another. Personally, the project allows me to resonate with the saying “Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much”. Hopefully, this would be like a pebble we drop into the water, and may the ripples spread out to all audience and listeners of this song, feeling the sense of appreciation and bliss.
I would like to share my gratitude to everyone working on this project for welcoming me to be part of the team. Special thanks to Jia Han, Kai Pik and Ngeong Poh for your kindness, understanding and last but not least, your trust. Thank you.