In Harmony 

U of M students create "virtual symphony" of musicians from around the world.

A couple of University of Memphis grad students are proving that you don't have to be on the same stage — or even in the same country — to play music together.

Ionut Cosarca and Liviu Craciun, both originally from Romania, have collaborated with more than 100 young musicians from around the world to create a "virtual symphony."

Their virtual symphony video, which was recorded and performed by musicians from more than 30 countries, has reached more than 11,000 hits on YouTube over the last couple of weeks.

What originally began as a small project between Cosarca and Craciun at the Rudi E. Scheidt School of Music at the University of Memphis quickly grew to unexpected popularity.

"Craciun recorded the first violin and viola parts, and I played the second violin and the cello part on a viola," Cosarca said. "We put [our recordings] together with some video and audio editing, and in the end it sounded like a string quartet."

In the beginning, the recording was only of Craciun and Cosarca, but they decided to invite friends from Romania and other countries to join. From there, they realized they could do a virtual orchestra that would allow a lot of people to cooperate on a single piece.

"We were originally thinking about doing an arrangement of a pop rock song," said Cosarca, "like something from Radiohead."

But something a bit more baroque, Pachelbel's Canon in D, was in the cards for Cosarca and Craciun, and the virtual symphony project became a means of advocating classical music to young musicians around the world.

Nearly all of the collaborating musicians are between 10 and 20 years old and joined the project through Cosarca and Craciun's social media campaign.

"We created a website,, as well as a Facebook page and a YouTube channel and started sending messages to musicians," Cosarca said. "We posted the musical part on the Facebook page along with instructions and a metronome beat."

Soon, dozens of musicians from around the world joined in on the collaboration, far surpassing the pair's expectations.

"People just started recording their parts and submitting them, and they got more and more involved as time passed by," Cosarca said. "Initially, we were only expecting to get around 20 or 30 musicians."

In the opening minute of the video, each musician and a conductor is shown on-screen, arranged in a way that resembles a symphony onstage. This dissolves to show a handful of musicians at a time, labeled by their country of origin. The video can be viewed on and YouTube.

Cosarca and Craciun expect to begin working on their next virtual symphony project within two months.

"For our next project, we hope to get more musicians involved," Cosarca said, "and we're thinking about doing a piece by either Bach or Beethoven."



Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment



Beyond the Arc

Grizzlies 101, Nuggets 94: Finally, a Win!

Intermission Impossible

"Drowsy Chaperone" hits, "Laughter on the 23rd Floor" hits walls

We Saw You

Spirit Fest, Butcher's Dinner

News Blog

Supreme Court Sets Two More Execution Dates

News Blog

$28M Raleigh Town Center to Break Ground

Film/TV/Etc. Blog

Seven Days In Entebbe

Hungry Memphis

Feast on the Farm with David Krog


More by Andrew Caldwell

  • Unleaded Art

    Memphis College of Art students design mural for Discount Gas.
    • May 31, 2012
  • Beer Run

    Downtown Bardog regulars trade brews for running shoes.
    • May 17, 2012
  • Q & A with Mike Lee

    Co-founder of High Cotton Brewing Company/Owner of Mid-South Malts
    • May 3, 2012
  • More »

Readers also liked…

© 1996-2018

Contemporary Media
460 Tennessee Street, 2nd Floor | Memphis, TN 38103
Visit our other sites: Memphis Magazine | Memphis Parent | Inside Memphis Business
Powered by Foundation