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Why Choirs Aren’t Dead

Contemporary singers consider choir as part of their career –says Mark De-Lisser

During my childhood is was almost ‘law’ that you sang in the church choir.

I don’t remember any of my friends (singers or non singers), not singing in the choir.

It was very much seen as a social gathering for us all, and whilst we didn’t know it at the time, it was developing our singing voices too.

Choirs are all the rage at the moment and are regularly spoken of in society for bringing communities together and getting everyone to sing.

But is it something that everyone should get involved in? Should it be ‘law’ to all would be singers?

The simple answer is YES!

The Reasons

As a singer – beginner, developing, semi pro or pro – here are some good reasons why you should get involved in a choir.

Singing in a choir can:

• Develop your confidence
• Develop your ear for harmony
• Strengthen your voice
• Improve your range
• Help add freedom to your movement
• Improve your ability to blend vocally
• Improve your solo singing (if you get the chance)
• Help you meet new people with different strengths and vocal abilities
• Provide a new captive audience for your upcoming gigs
• Increase your ‘dep’ list
• Add to your income (if it’s a gigging choir)

So if you’re are a singer at the very beginnings of your journey or on the development trail, find a local community choir that you can get involved in—one that sings the type of music that you enjoy of course.

If you are more of a semi pro/professional singer, then try and find a gigging choir that will give you more opportunities to perform.

There are many choirs around who run both a beginners choir and a gigging choir so make sure you find one that is suitable for you.

Choirs are in high demand for weddings, corporate events, parties, recordings, TV and live work and so the possibilities are endless as to what you can get involved in.

This will also add to your CV and give you invaluable experience.

My Reactions To This Week’s Peer Review Vids

Alicia Ruiz – Safe & Sound (Cover)
Really nice playing and you have a very innocent tone – enjoyable. Please make sure you tune up sufficiently before recording. I would love more connection melodically in your sound – sing through the phrases more to really get out the emotion of this song. It just feels a little ‘broken’ up melodically. You have made the breathy moments of this performance really delicate and ‘right’ for this song. Be careful with pitching at times.

Russell St. George – You Can Talk to Me (Original)

Loving your tone Russell. I’m sure you have many stories to tell. Couple of things: your posture is suffering in this performance because you are having to lean over to get to the mic. This also has a bearing on your support, which was problematic at times. This is easily remedied by raising the mic to your mouth. Also, I feel that the guitar is too loud for this performance. I need to hear your voice more please. However, there were moments of real emotional connection and story which I liked.

Tyra – Sum Me Up (Cover)

A really sensitive and enjoyable performance. Good playing. Your intonation is secure mostly throughout this performance and there is a real connection to the song too. I would have liked this to be more directed at us, your audience, so that it really connected with us. Looking at you hands playing the guitar just doesn’t communicate enough. You have a great sound so now let’s increase this performance with more of an outward focus.

Check out Mark’s Feature Interview with VoiceCouncil

By the way, see www.singology.com for information on their choirs.

See Mark’s advice when it comes out each week by receiving our Peer Review Newsletter

Mark De-Lisser is a vocal coach, vocal arranger, choir leader and vocal producer who has worked with some of the top vocal talent in contemporary music today including Jessie J, Olly Murs, Jamie Woon and Beverly Knight. Mark has taught at many recognized music institutions and held several high profile TV roles including Vocal Coach on BBC’s The Voice UK. Mark actively leads the renowned ACM Gospel Choir and has published “Sing Out!”, two volumes of pop songs for contemporary choirs. Find out more on Mark’s website: www.markdelisser.com

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  • Kathy Coneys Alexander

    Totally agree! AND…not to mention the awesome feeling you get knowing you are participating in a practice that people have been doing for hundreds of years in just about every culture. Choral singing unifies us and humbles us and lifts us up. Orchestras and bands can have a similar effect, but there’s something different about the voice…