Since then each week June explores how best to keep us together both musically and socially.
A total of 50 or more choristers now join in the two hour online ‘rehearsal’ held each Tuesday evening. In preparation for this, each chorister records him or herself (audio/video) singing to a prerecorded piano accompaniment on Dropbox. The resulting video recording is then sent to a member of the bass section who endeavours to combine the collective efforts of our individual contributions and put it into a ‘virtual choir’. Each Tuesday evening we enter the Zoom rehearsal room from the safety of our smart devices various and after a cacophony of ‘hellos’ etc all the online participants mute their microphones and sing along at home.
It’s certainly not a patch on being able to meet together, but it does keep the momentum and connection between a large group of choral enthusiasts going.
Morale remains high and our combined technical know how, as well as our individual confidence, is improving greatly from week to week. Zoom, YouTube and DropBox are now part of the daily routine and, ‘if music be the food of love’, we are certainly well fed!
Helen, from the tenor section, even penned a verse describing the experience (to be sung to the familiar Gilbert & Sullivan tune of I Am the Very Model of a Modern Major-General)
I am the very model of a COVID-19 chorister
No longer driving to rehearsals in my nice blue Forrester.
I’ve loaded Zoom and got my score and pencils multifarious;
I’ve balanced my work laptop in a place that’s quite precarious.
I’ve banged out notes on piano keys, but some were accidental ones,
I hope that we won’t sing alone in front of some judgemental ones;
But now we’re live, I find that I start feeling quite affectional
And here I sing, with all the other people in my sectional.
So for your amusement and enjoyment, here are two videos. The first is of me trying to get a recording right. The second isn’t perfect and I’ve definitely decided that I don’t like recording myself, but at least I managed to get from the beginning to the end without stopping.