America’s front line healthcare workers have been waging a hard battle to save lives during the COVID-19 pandemic, often risking personal safety to carry out their work and at a great sacrifice to their families.
When world-class pianist and vocalist Stephanie King LaMotte and her husband, local businessman and author Richard LaMotte, were watching the news one morning last spring, they were awed by the magnitude of courage and energy of healthcare workers putting themselves at risk in the midst of the pandemic.
The couple decided to sit down and express their appreciation in lyrics set to the music of Leonard Cohen-Rufus Wainwright’s song, “Hallelujah.”
Stephanie is director of music and choir master at Emanuel Episcopal Church and the assistant director and accompanist of the Chester River Chorale. She recently performed on stage with her grand piano as accompanist for the Church Hill Theatre’s production of Moises Kaufman’s Beethoven homage, “33 Variations.”
In this interview, Stephanie LaMotte explains the process that unfolded that morning that resulted in the lyrical tribute video.
“This was the first song Richard and I wrote together,” LaMotte said.
Each with pen and pad in hand, the couple wrote their own verses then collaborated on a final product, working the kinks out on Stephanie’s grand Steinway, “my family’s piano.”
The LaMottes then turned to producing a video. The couple invited local vocalist Brad Chaires to perform. The presentation evolving from keyboard to ukulele. Libby Woolever produced the video using photos that Richard LaMotte had collected.
The result is Heroes Hallelujah.