Recordings 4 Choirs offer Schools the chance to make a professional recording and Fundraise from Album sales.
Way back in 2004 when Recordings 4 Choirs was ‘born’ we were very clear about our offering. As the title of our website suggests, we are in the business of Recording Choirs.
Nowadays I’m told that singing in a choir is, certainly in the UK, one of the most popular hobbies people engage in, outside of Sport. Strictly speaking, according to Grove, which is my ‘go to’ reference source for anything music related, a Choir is defined as follows.
(1) A group of singers who perform together either in unison or, much more usually, in parts.
(2) A homogeneous group of instruments , generally forming part of larger forces. For example, a group of brass instruments can be referred to as a brass choir, and an instrumental component of a poly choral work as an instrumental choir.
Source – The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians (ed. Stanley Sadie, 1980)
You could say based on that definition a choir is essentially any group of musicians! Obviously, far be it for me to try and re word Grove. For the purpose of this website and our recording business, we define choirs in accordance with the 1st definition above. Essentially a group of singers. We do also record instrumental solos as well as orchestras, chamber groups and brass bands. But that’s for another post on another day!
When it comes to recording choirs in schools, this is again a surprisingly big area which is why I thought this post might help usefully define what we mean by recording a school choir.
The majority of school choirs we record are in Independent Schools – both Prep Schools and Senior Schools. We treat this in a very similar way to recording chamber choirs or semi professional groups. Indeed some of the Prep School Choirs we have worked with are outstanding and perform a range of complex repertoire.
Of course we don’t just stick to choirs, you might have a whole range of singing groups at your school you’d like to record. We have in the past recorded the ‘House singing Competition’ as well as entire schools singing together. It’s always worth including all the pupils on the recording as this will enable you to sell more CDs or digital albums. If for example the majority of your album is a chapel choir, you might also consider recording some congregational hymn singing. Perhaps you have a ‘School Song or Hymn’ which would be a great final track on your album?
The bulk of our school recording work is taken up recording in Primary Schools and Academies. The main reason for this is that in Primary Schools there is still a culture of singing. The pupils love singing and still do lots of if in assemblies. But once they graduate to secondary school at age 11/12 it seems that singing all but stops. We think this is a great shame, but nevertheless the important thing is to capture the moment.
The bulk of our work in Primary schools is centred around each year group (or class in smaller schools) singing a couple of songs and then the whole school singing together – or perhaps KS1 and KS2 doing their own songs too. Not only is this a great experience for the pupils – it’s potentially a once in a life time opportunity to record their own album.
Aside of being a great project to be involved in, School recordings are great fundraisers. Regardless of whether you sell physical CDs to parents or utilise our online shop, most schools can make £5 or more profit per album sold, which in a lot of cases will translate as £1000 – £2000 in proceeds from album sales. This money can then be used by your school for any purpose you wish.