Take that, COVID-19: This New West group is finding ways to sing through the pandemic

Quayside Voices is presenting a livestreamed concert from 100 Braid Street Studios on Sunday, July 5

Quayside Voices aren’t about to let a pandemic stop them from sharing their love of a cappella music with the city.

The New Westminster-based quintet is offering up a live-streamed concert on Sunday, July 5 from 100 Braid Street Studios – the group’s home base and, as they call it, their “living room.”

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Quayside in the House will feature a set of the group’s favourite songs, pulled from their repertoire of original a cappella arrangements of pop music.

It’s being brought to the stage thanks to a New Westminster Responsive Neighbourhood Small Grant from the Vancouver Foundation.

Audience members won’t be allowed in to watch live, out of concerns over COVID-19, but the singers will be able to work together – at appropriate physical distance from each other – thanks to some new technology.

“Using in-ear monitors and microphones will allow the five of us to sing apart from each other while being able to hear the blend and voices clearly,” explained Stephanie Lam, who sings alto with the group.

The group’s sound engineer, Emil Wu, has been working with the technology to ensure the group can produce a clear sound for the online audience.

Lam noted that their tech use stems from training sessions they had with Tony Huerta, the sound engineer for international a cappella stars Take 6 and The Real Group. Huerta flew in earlier this year to give the Quayside singers a weekend intensive.

Along with the technology, the singers have benefited from having the spacious surroundings of 100 Braid Street to work in.

“100 Braid Street has also been a huge factor in why we can even do this, as the space is large enough, with tall ceilings and circulation, to ease our minds and fears of aerosols and droplets,” Lam said.

As a result, she said, the singers will be able to put on a concert that, despite social distancing, will still provide the musical intricacies experienced through a cappella vocal music.

Looking ahead, Lam said, the singers are hoping to be able to stage an outdoor performance – and a musically satisfying one, since the in-ear monitors and microphones will allow them to produce good sound, even physically distanced, in the open air.

Quayside Voices features the talents of Lam, Justin Pham and Troy Martell, along with Elyse Kantonen and Megan Dray – who are filling in for Maggie Ma and Alyssa Inouye, both on maternity leave.

The livestreamed concert will be free. You can find the stream through https://quaysidevoices.com/



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