Hal Leonard Europe has partnered with Gareth Malone and Decca Records to create the Great British Home Chorus, a unique initiative in response to the coronavirus crisis. With communal music making and choral singing made difficult under lockdown directives, Gareth has stepped up in spectacular fashion to provide an online choral experience, which is open to everyone.
Having inspired choirs to form in unlikely places – hospitals, barracks and even prisons – Gareth Malone is no stranger to making music happen in adverse conditions. However, the coronavirus is surely his greatest challenge yet: how do you get people to come together and sing when they are isolating and social distancing? The answer is through the formation of the Great British Home Chorus. Starting this week, Gareth is leading daily rehearsals on YouTube, taking his watching participants through warm-ups and exercises before tackling popular songs arranged for mixed voices. Each song, once learned, will be recorded by the individual singers at home, who will then upload their parts to be digitally stitched together to create the world’s biggest ever virtual choir performance.
Sheet music for the songs is being provided by Hal Leonard Europe through its leading online sheet music store Musicroom.com. Once registered to take part, members of the chorus can access the music required for free. Over 100,000 singers have already signed up to join the choir from the UK and beyond – truly a phenomenal response and indicative of the passion that people have for singing together. More songs will be added as this ambitious project unfolds, culminating in a release of the collective recording.
”Under unprecedented conditions, Gareth Malone has once again shown his unique ability to pull people together to make music – Hal Leonard Europe is very proud to be the suppliers of the music for the Great British Home Chorus and we cannot wait to see it go from strength to strength over the coming weeks.”Tom Farncombe, Strategic Partnerships Director, Hal Leonard Europe
”We have an incredibly rich tradition of community music-making in Britain, whether that be amateur choirs, youth orchestras or regional theatre companies … while we will find that in the coming weeks the lights on concert halls and rehearsal rooms will go dark, this shouldn’t mean we have to stop making music altogether.”Gareth Malone
About Gareth Malone
Gareth Malone OBE is well known in the UK and around the world as a choral animateur, singer, composer and workshop leader. He has won two BAFTAS for his BBC Two series ‘The Choir’ which is now in its fourteenth year of production. Other achievements include working as artistic director for a Royal Opera House community opera, working with orchestra and opera education departments including the LSO, Philharmonia, Glyndebourne and ENO Baylis.
Gareth has had three number one records in the UK with the Military Wives Choir and the ‘Gareth Malone All Star Choir’ for Children in Need. His 2014 series ‘The Big Performance 3’ won the Royal Television Society award for best children’s television and ‘Gareth Goes to Glyndebourne’ won an International Emmy in 2011. In 2012 he was honoured with an OBE by Her Majesty the Queen for services to music.
Gareth continues to run choirs, compose with young people and to work with emerging artists. He has recorded with some of the leading performers in the UK and is currently working on his third album.