Wounded, injured and sick service personnel and veterans create Invictus Games ‘Anthem For All’ using assistive technology powered by Microsoft
The Invictus Games Foundation and a group of wounded, injured and sick service personnel and veterans have created an ‘Anthem for All’, a truly inclusive anthem for the Invictus Games The Hague 2020, which took place April 16th to the 22nd 2022. Backed by the Invictus Games Choir, the anthem uses Microsoft powered technology to enable the veterans to play instruments that they wouldn’t otherwise be able to.
Working in collaboration with Microsoft’s Hands-Free Technology Lab in San Francisco, the project team adapted existing tech and created bespoke solutions to suit the varied abilities of those taking part. Utilising Xbox ‘adaptive controllers’ and ‘Gaze eye tracking’ technology, the team assembled an orchestra of instruments that could be played with limited hand mobility or even eye movement, restoring a part of the veterans’ that had been taken away by their injuries.
The Invictus Games Foundation have published a docufilm by McCann London / New York on the making of the anthem featuring the stories of those involved and showing their collaboration on the anthem using Microsoft assistive technology. The docufilm is available to view on https://youtu.be/jHTXujh19RA
The short film features Private Karl Hinett and Lance Corporal Emma Lum and uncovers the journey that they went through, from their life in service, to their life after injury, to finally being able to play music again.
Under the guidance of Music Director Davy Williamson and with a group of other wounded, injured and sick service personnel and veterans, the anthem was recorded at the world-famous Metropolis Studios in London and released to the public in the lead up to the Games.
Hector Minto from Microsoft UK said: “Microsoft believes in empowering every person on the planet to do more and be more with the help of technology. Few things demonstrate that philosophy more than this project. It’s been an honour working with a like-minded partner like the Invictus Games Foundation to make this a reality.”
Matt Collis, Commercial and Fundraising Director at the Invictus Games Foundation, said ‘This project with Microsoft challenged us to rethink the possible with technology. We’re excited to see the potentials for the future, and thanks Karl, Emma, and the Invictus Games Choir for their involvement. The repurposed Invictus Anthem was a powerful inclusion in the Invictus Games The Hague 2020 Medal Ceremonies.”