Watch Rufus Wainwright and choir of 1,500 people sing ‘Across The Universe’

Wainwright first recorded The Beatles' song in 2001

Rufus Wainwright has teamed up with 1,500 singers from around the globe to perform a socially-distanced rendition of The Beatles’ ‘Across The Universe’. Wainwright organised the initiative with Toronto-based group Choir! Choir! Choir!

Watch the performance below:


The performance paid tribute to the late civil rights activist John Lewis in the description of its video upload.

“These voices and faces represent the love and hopefulness we have for our days ahead,” Choir! Choir! Choir! wrote.

“As the late great John Lewis (R.I.P.) once said: ‘If it hadn’t been for music, the Civil Rights Movement would’ve been like a bird without wings. Music… brought us together. It created a sense of solidarity.’”

Rufus Wainwright first recorded a version of ‘Across The Universe’ in 2001 for the film I Am Sam. The movie’s soundtrack is comprised entirely of Beatles covers.

“I have sung ‘Across the Universe’ for many years,” Wainwright wrote on Twitter after uploading his recent performance.

“But only now do I truly understand. It is the universe that is singing ‘Nothing’s gonna change my world.’ Thank you to @choirchoirchoir and everyone who lent your voices to this beautiful performance.”


Rufus Wainwright released his tenth studio album, ‘Unfollow the Rules’, in July. The album features previously released singles ‘Alone Time’, ‘Peaceful Afternoon’, ‘Damsel In Distress’, ‘Trouble In Paradise’ and ’You Ain’t Big’.

Speaking to NME in the lead-up to the album’s release, Wainwright said “there’s a toughness to this album that certain of my records have.”

“I feel very rooted and there’s a clarity to it.”