Virtual Choir Instructions 2

St. Louis Choir will make virtual recordings

Here’s the main idea: The conductor chooses the music and provides things that the choir needs to rehearse. The choir members rehearse at various times during the assignment period, and before the deadline each member makes a recording and submits it. The conductor combines the recordings to produce a virtual choir recording. We hope to make recordings that are good enough to be included in Christmas liturgies and the Christmas concert. This year.

Our conductor has chosen the Soundtrap tool to be used by members who wish to participate. There’s a bit of a learning curve, but Terry will help members get things working on their home computers.

To ask questions:

Send email to or phone him at 443-838-0522. Call him if you need help. He has said he prefers working with members one-on-one and can help with any problems you might have trying to use new tools.

Virtual Choir Information:

Things you will need:

  1. A computer with a microphone. (Not an Ipad and not a smartphone.)
  2. Wired earbuds or headphone. No airpods or bluetooth devices.
  3. Google Chrome browser. Do not use any other browser.
  4. The music score.
  5. Access to Soundtrap. Terry will send to you an invitation to join our “class” in Soundtrap. Contact him if you need help with that.

1. Find the materials:

Terrys resource folder

2. Practice your assignments:

To find your assignments, click the link below this paragraph. Note that the links in Terry’s list all include the word “assignment.” Each link takes you to the “studio,” where you will work on one song.

Terrys list of assignments

Here is a tutorial by Betsy Bates of the Children’s Chorus of Washington. She provides very simple instructions to help you get started using Soundtrap for your practice. (Note that Betsy is speaking to members of her organization and showing the tracks of one song that they are rehearsing. When you look at one of our songs, you will see a different number of tracks in that assignment. Every assignment will have different tracks.)

How to practice using Soundtrap

3. Record an assignment:

You have practiced and you are ready to record something. Great! Here are the instructions.

  1. Record in a quiet space without background noise. If the phone rings, the dog howls, the neighbor fires up his chain saw, or a family member enters the room while talking, you will have to start over.
  2. Wear wired headphones or earbuds to listen to the assignment while you record yourself singing. You need to hear the recording Terry provided, but you do not want any sound except your own voice on your own recording.
  3. Record yourself using Soundtrap.  (See Betsy’s tutorial, below.)
  4. Click on the “add new track” tab, left side of the screen.
    A popup window will appear.
  5. Press “Voice & microphones”
    Choose “Voice > Clean”
    Dismiss the popup window by clicking the “x”
    (Note that your choice of voice can be changed, even after you make your recording. So, if you do not like the way it sounds you can change it later. That microphone icon on the new track’s tab can be used to get the popup window back.)
  6. Mute tracks you do not want to hear. Do that by clicking on the headphones in the track tabs, left side of the screen.
  7. Click the “R” on the tab of your new track. Do not do that to any tracks Terry supplied.
  8. Now you can record your new track using the red record button, bottom of the screen.
  9. Listen to your recording. If you are unhappy with it, you can delete it by clicking on its tab on the left side of the screen. You can use the three-dot thing. Press it to see options, including the delete option. Do not do that to any tracks Terry supplied.
  10. Please rename the new track with your voice part and name. (Example: “Alto-Kathy-Spies”)

Here are two tutorials from Betsy. This one shows you how to record your track. Remember, these tutorials were made for the Children’s Chorus. Terry may eventually want slightly different settings for us. When he gives out new information, I will pass it along.

How to record your track using Soundtrap

More on using Soundtrap

Why do we insist you use a computer and not an Ipad and not a smartphone? Because the app from Soundtrap for Ipad and smartphones does not work well with the Soundtrap “studio” that we are using. The Safari browser on Ipad and smartphone also causes Soundtrap to malfunction. You do not need grief in your life trying to use Soundtrap on these devices. You’d spend all your time trying to cope with software problems. Use a computer that is running the Chrome browser and all will be well.

Great work from The Children’s Chorus of Washington:

And yes, they were recording the audio using Soundtrap. (They recorded the video using a different tool.)