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  • Writer's pictureIda Olsonen

What Can We Do With A Group Of Singers Online? - part 2

The previous post was about the basic solution for singing in a group online; having each singer muted, and the facilitator providing audio ques to support them. So -

What about actually feedbacking on the singing?

To this question, I currently have two structural solutions to offer.

The first one is borrowed straight from the one-to-one -teaching situation on distance. Along those lines, feedbacking on a single example is equally possible in front of the group. This I have yet used only with smaller musical excerpts, usually relating to specific questions (ie. the interval in a specific bar, the chord progression in a specific chorus, asking the singer to sing either for me or repeat after me). Being comfortable with singing solo in front of a big group online takes time and trust, and I want my students first and foremost to feel safe.

The second one is an idea that my colleague Julia Lainema brought up. In order to being able to feedback the singers, possibly in a smaller group, one could try to provide a visual que for the singing, and have the singers microphones on but their speakers off. In other words, after agreeing on the passage and giving the pitches, the singers turn their speakers off and follow the visual que. Here, the singers experience is even lonelier than when they're guided by an audio que. However, for shorter passages and discussing f. ex. blend or phrasing, this could provide the conductor valuable information of how each section (f. ex.) is sounding together, an assimilation of "the real deal".

Divide into smaller groups for parts of the time!

In Zoom, this feature is called breakout rooms. I really recommend using this feature, as I find that it

  • gives more space for each and everyone to interact

  • enables more spontaneous discussions

  • is great for brainstorming, group tasks (f. ex. in voice groups) & trying out specific tech features in the software so that everyone gets a go

  • is an excellent tool for pacing the rehearsal & providing a change in energy & intensity

  • could be used for practising in voice parts, as the participants can share audio the same way as the facilitator can. For more details on this, check out part 1 of this post series!

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