Music 'as vital as food and air'

November 04 2020

AN award-winning conductor from Hanham is hoping to reconnect singers through an app.
Simon Capet has created Koor to enable choral singers who have trouble reading music to learn their parts by interacting with recordings of professional singers.
The app also helps them improve their vocal technique through personalised online guidance driven by machine learning-based algorithms.
Simon, who lives in Bryants Hill with his wife Eve, first conducted an orchestra at 14, directing the Wakefield Youth Symphony Orchestra in a performance of Dvorak’s New World Symphony. At 15 he began his studies at the Royal College of Music and then won an exhibition scholarship to study at the Royal Academy of Music.
He received awards for his work as music director for the Modern Baroque Opera in Vancouver, Canada, where he also served as the music coordinator and assistant conductor for the Vancouver Opera.
Simon said: “Launching Koor is hugely exciting, and I believe that music is as essential to humans as air, water and food. It supports us, consoles us, excited and inspires us.
“In many ways, choral singing is the most powerful way of making music. It brings people together in harmony; it provides strength through community and it makes people happy, literally. Singing stimulates the production of endorphins, the body’s natural happy drugs. I am so happy that Koor can help the millions of choral singers who are missing their practice at the moment, and helping bring a community together in such uncertain times.”
Koor raised £123,117 in seed funding last year, which was invested  the development of software as well as securing a recording space and renumerating various musicians and singers required to bring the necessary quality to the app. The tech enterprise now intends to run a further investment round on Seedrs later this year.
Simon said: “We want to create an app that will make personal practice as enjoyable as group rehearsals, utilising technology to help people learn their parts on their own - and have fun doing it. We also want to help singers continue preparing for future performances during this period of isolation and support as many people as possible towards discovering the health and social benefits of choral singing.
  “Building on data collected during our market research phase we have identified that choral singing is the most popular form of participation in the performing arts and there are approximately 2.15 million people in the UK who sing at least once a week in a choir.
 “There is also an estimated 120 million people who sing regularly in choirs across the globe, and of these, over 75 per cent struggle to learn choral music due to an inability to read music fluently.
"Our mission is to build a global community of Koor evangelists by offering the widest range of audio practice aids of the highest quality and all of this will be completely free.”
For information and to download the app for any smart device visit: www.koor.app