Temple Sinai Congregation of Toronto

Virtual Choir Instructions

Here is an exciting opportunity for us as a choir to share our love of music and of singing with each other with our Temple family.

We are asking everyone to do their part in creating a virtual choir recording. While there is a bit of a learning curve to make this happen, it isn’t beyond our capabilities to achieve this together.

We have put together background recordings with the Cantor’s voice for each part to give everyone support. So, when you make your own recording, you will have the Cantor ‘in your ear’ at the same time. Pretty neat.

Here are the important things to know. Preparation is key. Make sure you have everything you need and practice a few recordings until you are satisfied. When you finish all the steps and send us your recording, you’ll be amazed at how easy it really is. And, if we can do this one – well, maybe we’ll do some more! Our congregants are eager to hear our voices again.

  1. A copy of your sheet music (place this next to your monitor or phone so you do not look down).
  2. A copy of the master audio file for your part. You will listen to this while you are singing (will give you timing and notes for your part, so all our voices come together as one)
  3. A separate way to hear the Master audio file (e.g., boombox, phone — if using computer) (you will plug your earphones into this second device). You cannot hear and record in the same device.
  4. Earbuds/headphone (so you can hear the Master audio file) plugged into the boombox/phone (not the device you are recording on — e.g., your laptop) Earbuds are a more aesthetic choice for recording. For video, have only one earbud in the left ear.
  5. An iPhone or Android phone (If you use a phone, please record positioning the phone horizontally and on a steady surface) OR a computer or laptop with a webcam.
  6.  Please check that your desktop has a microphone. Laptops do. Phones do.
  1. Refresh yourself on your part (that means practice it a few times).
  2. Find a quiet place to rehearse and record. We recommend standing for better breath control while singing.
  3. Frame your picture, so you don’t have obvious page turns captured in the video. If using a phone – make sure it is horizontal (landscape). Please look up!
  4. Check your set up and make sure you have everything noted above.
  5. Do a practice recording with your master audio file with the Cantor’s voice in your ear (you will use this method for the final recording). Remember, the master audio is playing on a different device (boombox).
  6. For your final recording, please make sure your background is simple, your shirt has no patterns, and try to centre yourself in the screen (web camera should be at eye level if possible) so we aren’t looking up your nose! Try not to record in front of a window. Light your face from the front. You will find it easier to have just one earphone in your LEFT ear when you are singing.
  7. Smile while singing – or try to look like you are enjoying yourself. Try not to rock back and forth.
  8. See below for how to record from your iPhone a webcam on your PC (laptop with camera).
  9. Once you have recorded, please send it using WeTransfer (free) and in the message area indicate your name and part.
  10. Send the file using WeTransfer to lana.rottenberg@gmail.com. Do not use email – the file is too big.

To make the ‘marrying’ of our audio files easier, we ask that everyone clap at the same time in a specific place in the music. By doing this, the audio file has a ‘bump’ visually that cues the editor for what he/she needs to do.
The Cantor will direct you to clap in the recording before you sing.

There a few ways to accomplish this.
Easiest: Record yourself on your iPhone or Android phone.
Next Easiest: Using the webcam installed in your laptop or on your computer monitor to make your audio/video recording.
It is totally up to you. Whatever makes you most comfortable and give you a result you are ok with.

  1. When you are ready (and this can be practice or final take) click on Camera, select Video, hit Red Button to record.
    Hit Red Button again when finished. Please make sure your phone is on a shelf or tripod.

2. Your file is automatically saved to your Photos.

As it is a bit tricky to rename the file, you can note your name and part when sending the file via WeTransfer. WeTransfer directions to follow

Step 1. On your Home screen, go to your Windows Icon (top right), then select Camera (on left).

Step 2. It will open in ‘camera mode’. Click on Video Icon on right (this will turn on recording mode – for sound and picture recording).

Step 3. Click on Video Button to start recording

Step 4. Click on Red Square in Red Circle button to stop recording. The file is automatically saved in your Photos.

Step 5. To get to Photos, click on Microsoft Windows Icon, and scroll down on left for Photos.

Step 6. Once you are there, you will see your video. Double click on it to see it play.

Step 7. If you are satisfied, then right click with your mouse and Save As on your PC. Please save your file as “Your Part Your Name” (e.g. TenorFirstLastname.mp4).

To send the file, you will need to go to www.wetransfer.com. This is because the file is too big to be sent by conventional email. It is free. You will need to have your email address and Lana.rottenberg@gmail.com (as person to send your file to). You will attach the file and presto – there it goes. You can use WeTransfer on your phone or your PC. Once your file is sent you will receive a confirmation.

In your message, state your full name and your part (Soprano, Alto, Tenor, Bass).

Go to your web browser and type Wetransfer.com. Rest of the process is the same. Go to your files on your PC, select the video and then email it to Lana.rottenberg@gmail.com using WeTransfer.

And then, our techno-angels will marry all the files together into a beautiful video montage of our virtual choir. Wow.

Please contact us for more information about joining the choir.

Cantor Charles Osborne


Cantor Sharon Brown-Levy