Not to mince words, but Evynne and Peter Hollens are kind of a big deal. Evynne Hollens is a singer and performer who directs and teaches. Peter Hollens is a singer-songwriter, producer and entrepreneur. Together, they’ve built a life in music and, from their cozy base in Eugene, shared it with the world.
“I love collaborating with people, and the internet has allowed us to do that,” Peter Hollens says. “I work with influencers who are far greater than my size. I’ll do all of the work, pay my team, but I offer you a genre you’ve never offered to your fans, and I just ask that you offer it to your fan base.”
The genre is a cappella, as most of Peter Hollens’ pieces — both covers and original compositions — feature rich, polyphonic music created only with the human voice and mouth.
Peter Hollens estimates he’s partnered on more than 40 performances with artists from around the globe. Most recently, he and Evynne Hollens flew to Provo, Utah, to work with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, the Piano Guys and David Archuleta on a new video featuring a record-breaking number of live nativity participants, which has since been viewed online more than seven million times.
Peter Hollens says his workflow can mean juggling up to eight projects at a time, in which he not only performs but also serves as producer, editor and marketing wizard. After signing with Sony, he launched his eponymous album last October.
So how does one pay a mortgage, or raise a family, by singing? (The couple welcomed their first baby, Ashland, last spring.)
Hollens points to Patreon (patreon.com) as a model of patronage updated for the 21st century: “Patreon is a crowd-funding answer for consistent content creators,” he says.
Through Patreon, audiences pledge to support the creation of new work, such as Peter Hollens’ latest video. In turn, artists can receive feedback from fans along with small, but consistent, donations. All those little sums add up, enabling Peter Hollens to focus his time on perfecting his creative process and the diligent maintenance of his brand.
Both Peter and Evynne Hollens have garnered a global audience online and, concurrently, Evynne Hollens continues to share her talents throughout the local community, performing with Oregon Contemporary Theatre, The Shedd and the Eugene Concert Choir. She teaches voice and is a regular director with Rose Children’s Theatre.
“Live performance is important. And it’s magical,” Evynne Hollens says. “But when you do it online, you reach millions.”
Find links for Peter and Evynne Hollens’ collection of videos, as well as more information about their music, by visiting their YouTube channels at wkly.ws/1wn and http://wkly.ws/1wo.