Distant-Sing – A Brand New Virtual Singing Experience

March 18, 2020 - By 
Banner Image of many Zoom calls making a mosaic

The situation with Coronavirus has changed our lives beyond recognition recently and we are all trying to work out new ways of interacting and keeping connected. All sorts of things are harder and some are impossible. Unfortunately one of these is being able to meet together to sing, which is what many of us rely on for our sanity and some for our actual livelihoods.

Sometimes when doors close others seem to open and we have discovered there is an opportunity to do something that perhaps we should have been doing all along…..

Welcome to a totally new online singing experience!

We are about to start a series of online singing experiences where you can join others from the safety of your home, either through a Computer, a Laptop, iPad or even smartphone, and not only meet singers from all round the world, but interact with them, make suggestions and connections, and even (almost) sing with them. You will have the option to join the session either on the Conferencing app Zoom, or Facebook live.

We will be using music available from the ChoirCommunity.net website. Normally there is a restriction to buy no less than 15 copies (based on the size of your choir) but this will be lifted for anyone joining the session so that the resource pack can be bought and downloaded by individuals wanting to take part as well.

Here’s how it’s going to work.

  • Register an account on ChoirCommunity (if you haven’t already) so you can access and download the resource pack for each session
  • If you want to join the session via Zoom, look into downloading the appropriate app or client for the device you are going to use
  • Download the resource pack for the appropriate upcoming session (the current pack can be found here)
  • Follow the instructions in the instructions and guidelines document includes in the resource pack for logging on and taking part in the session

The two experiences (Zoom and Facebook Live) will be a little different from each other.  Here’s how they will work:

If you choose the Zoom option you will be able to

  • See everybody who has turned their camera on
  • Talk to anyone who has joined (one at a time!)
  • Hear and watch the session leader teach the music
  • Type comments at any time or feedback when asked.
  • Sing along to the generated tracks.
  • Smile, wave, drink what you like, show pets, dance etc

If you choose the Facebook option you will be able to

  • See and hear the session leader very clearly
  • Type comments at any time – the leader can respond to these as well
  • Sometimes even hear the discussion between the singing sections
  • Sing along to any generated tracks

It’s important to note that the Zoom option will only be available to the first 100 joiners.  This is down to the limitation of the Zoom conferencing software.  If this idea is successful however, we will look at the options for increasing the number for future sessions.

We really hope you give this a try and join the community making great choral music together.

See you online soon!

  • Will singers be able to hear each other?

    • Hi Jane, unfortunately the technology is not there yet to enable the singing bit to go both ways so everyone will be on mute for those sections. However, the experience is surprisingly immersive as Craig creates a great sound from his studio to sing along to. In between the singing sections, the discussion, feedback and chat works very well. Craig ran his community choir rehearsal along this lines earlier in the week so we know it works!

  • Looks great, we were doing the same song before we had to stop.

  • Thanks so much for a great first session – unfortunately had to leave last nights a little early but now available for the whole sessions. Just wanted to say thanks for this opportunity, I really enjoyed the songs and can’t wait for the next!

  • It’s fine to charge for the resources. Thanks for setting the costs low. I enjoyed the first session – looking forward to the second

  • Just to say thanks for doing this – it was good fun. No problem charging for the resources – see you next week 🙂

  • Anthony Linden Jones March 24, 2020 at 12:25 pm

    How does it work? Do singers perform to broadcast rehearsal recordings in Zoom? How do the individual singers synchronise?

    • Hi Anthony, Craig runs the sessions as ‘intermittently’ interactive. The singing itself cannot be synchronised unfortunately as the technology simply doesn’t quite manage it, so the singing is done with everyone muted, but to a track which Craig plays through the speakers. In between each run-through there is plenty of opportunity for people to interact, chat, share stories and connect.

  • Hi,
    Just heard about this, can anyone join in?

    • Hi Helen,
      Yes, this is open to all our members (and joining up is free). We’re taking a short break at the moment but will be back with the next session very soon. If you haven’t registered with us yet, sign up now and I will email you as soon as we set the next date!

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