When you go to a concert, do you go to hear the musicians or the singers? Usually one is meant to compliment the other, but most often it is the singer that gets the main applause. I have found, however, that a number of singers aren't always that good. Without the music, their voice would struggle to entice an audience. Sometimes I think singers manage to get a record deal or agent, not because of their talent, but rather because their look or style will sell.
To test a singer's true abilities, try listening to them without music. That's how you know they are really good. That's how you know they are really brave as well. There are not many artists who do perform without music; those who do are known as a capella. The term originates from the Italian, meaning 'in the manner of the church', and is traditionally a form of church music. In modern times, however, singing without instrumental accompaniment has reached out to all sorts of genres, and is celebrated during London's annual A Cappella Festival.
2014's even runs between 22nd-25th January, with tickets costing £9.50 per show. Now in its fifth year, you can expect to hear a range of talent from across the world, including Russian orthodox chant, funk fusions, cutting edge beatbox. There will also be workshops, talks, and free activities to get involved in.
Most concerts will be held at King's Place, but the first venue will be LSO St. Luke's on the 22nd January from 8pm. The Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir are making a rare trip to London, under the esteemed baton of Daniel Reuss.
This is to be followed by the All American House Jacks, who will be making their London debut on the 23rd January. They have previously appeared in the blockbuster movie, Pitch Perfect, and been on the NBC television show, Sing Off.
You can join Pitch Perfect's music director, Deke Sharon, in a workshop on the 25th January for a vocal class. Other workshops include a lesson in Brazilian Rhythms & Body Percussion, Pass me the Jazz, and more.