A message from Gareth Malone for the Voice Festival UK community

We are thrilled to share this message from Gareth Malone for supporters of the Voice Festival.

Many familiar faces from the Voice Festival UK, past and present, will be flying the flag for British a cappella on the BBC’s new TV show, The Naked Choir, hosted by Gareth Malone. The show starts tonight, 9pm, on BBC2.

Watch out for Choral Stimulation, who were awarded the Voice Festival’s Ward Swingle Award for Originality at this year’s University Championships, and the Sons of Pitches, who first took to the stage with the Voice Festival back in 2011. A number of our talented workshop leaders and competition judges have some very special roles in the show too. We’ll leave you to tune in and find out who.

Watch closely and you will also see some clips from our recent Festival Weekend, and a cappella showcase at the Edinburgh Fringe.

We hope you enjoy the singing!


School Start-Up 2015 – What’s it all about?

P1040736Are you a teacher or do you work in schools? Want to get your boys and girls singing music that they want to sing while still working on harmonies, rhythm and allowing them to be creative? Then we would love for you to take part in School Start-Up. As ever, the Voice Festival is offering something bigger and better than ever before.

We know that getting young people singing can sometimes be tricky. Or what they want to sing doesn’t allow for collaboration and creativity. An a cappella group is THE perfect way to stimulate singing within schools. Over the last year within the Voice Festival Youth Programme we’ve seen groups of 40 boys from schools singing a cappella arrangements alongside their headteacher; we’ve seen some beatboxing by school students that you would not believe wasn’t coming from a beatboxer in a professional group; and we’ve seen lots of young groups performing arrangements that students of only 15/16 have written. It really is inspirational to see young people loving the music that they are singing.

Man BandSo how can you bring this to your school? We’re teaming up with our lovely friends at the London A Cappella Festival to offer you a launch event which will be the group’s first taste of a cappella. We’ll then send you away with a handbook and a mentor who has heaps of a cappella experience and will be on hand to answer questions and give you support on your a cappella journey. Then we’ll bring you back together with your new a cappella pals, introduce you to some University and Community groups and give you a performance event in which you can try out some of your new skills. If you like the sound of this then drop Amy an email on amy@thevoicefestival.co.uk and we’ll get back to you with some more information.


Why we loved the opportunity to ‘Take the Stage’ – by The Gist

Image of all singing participants who took part in Take the Stage

Credit: Haydn Wheeler and LACF

 

Lancaster Barbershop Quartet, The Gist, are one of many youth a cappella groups who took part in ‘Take the Stage’ – a day of a cappella learning and performing which was organised by the Voice Festival UK and the London A Cappella Festival.  Here’s what The Gist had to say about it:

The Gist had looked forward to the London A Cappella Festival for a long time. We arrived at King’s Place in London on Friday morning having arrived in London from Lancaster the previous night. We received a warm welcome from the team, and we followed the other school groups into the first rehearsal room. Within minutes any nerves we had were lost, and we were all very excited to see what the day would bring. We started with big group warm up with the Swingle Singers and the five other school age a cappella groups. This proved to be very entertaining and a great way to break the ice. We were then split up into  groups, with two professional singers per two groups, for the rest of the morning. We were taken by Oli from the Swingle Singers and Tine from Postyr. They certainly put us through our paces! We were given a great deal of advice, guidance and different ways of singing together as a group, including many novel techniques we had never attempted before. We have benefited hugely from all their suggestions and they helped us to improve as individual singers and as a group. The day culminated in an afternoon performance where we could see the other groups involved. We also sang together with all the other school groups and the Swingle Singers themselves in a performance of ‘Lady Madonna’, which was a fantastic experience.

The ‘Take the Stage’ workshop provided us with unprecedented exposure to a wealth of knowledge of a cappella music, an incredible opportunity for which we will always be hugely grateful.

Thanks to The Gist! 

To find out about other opportunities for school age a cappella singers, please contact alexandra@thevoicefestival.co.uk


Voice Festival UK recording partnership with Liquid 5th

Liquid 5th ProductionsThe Voice Festival UK are thrilled to announce that for our 2013 season we will be working in partnership with Liquid 5th, who have generously offered to record, mix and master a free single for the three winning groups from the Voice Festival’s Youth, University and Community competitions!

Liquid 5th, based in the US, provide a cappella services of all kinds – recording, production, editing, mixing and mastering, as well as live sound, arranging and coaching. Like the Voice Festival UK, they recognise and understand the multiple ways in which a cappella singers need support to develop, and we are delighted to be working with them this year.