A police officer from the Los Angeles Police Department posted a video of homeless Emily Zamourka with her shopping trolley and reusable bags on the police’s Twitter account.
The caption read: “4 million people call LA home. 4 million stories. 4 million voices…sometimes you just have to stop and listen to one, to hear something beautiful.”
The video of the pig-tailed 52-year-old immediately went viral and has been viewed more than 800,000 times, with those in awe hailing her vocals as the “voice of an angel”.
4 million people call LA home. 4 million stories. 4 million voices…sometimes you just have to stop and listen to one, to hear something beautiful. pic.twitter.com/VzlmA0c6jX
— LAPD HQ (@LAPDHQ) September 27, 2019
“With a voice like that, why doesn’t she have a career??,” said one Twitter user.
“Beautiful! can we find this angel and help her please?” – wrote another.
One woman tweeted: “I’ve seen her for years on the Metro. I heard her once singing “Ave Maria” and thought it was a radio at first.”
So what is her story?
She’s a classically trained violinist and pianist, who has no formal singing training. She moved to the US when she was 24 from Russia, where she learned to sing by imitating opera performers on TV. She was working giving violin lessons but was forced to stop when her health deteriorated in 2005 due to a failing pancreas and liver. Her violin was then stolen and she started falling behind on payments, until she got evicted and landed on the street.
A crowd fund has been set up to help find her somewhere to live and replace her violin.
She has already been booked by Los Angeles City Council to sing on Saturday night at the opening of Little Italy, an area in San Pedro celebrating Italian heritage.
Just goes to show… something going viral can be really wonderful and positive!