News & Views
Audition Oracle – Thu 30 Apr 2020 @ 12:38
At a time when our human survival instincts are constantly switched on, the brain can become tired very quickly, even if you feel you haven’t done anything of note. It can also be easy to lose motivation and procrastinate your way through the days. We’ve put together some ideas to help you stay focused, and retain some semblance of normality in your life.
Make your bed!
Set your alarm for the time you want to wake up, or for when your commitments require you to get up. Then, make your bed as soon as you get out of it as you'll feel that you have started your day positively by ticking off a task straight away.
Doing five minutes of exercise first thing is a great way to wake up your body and get your brain focused and ready for action.
Shower! Sticking to the routine you had before lockdown will really help your body and mind to feel a sense of normality (and therefore calm) in these very not-normal times.
Don’t skip breakfast. We all know it’s the most important meal of the day! Breakfast is also a great time to sit and think about what tasks you’d like to get done. Remember also to keep hydrated by drinking water at regular intervals during the day.
Choose a task, then set a timer for 25 minutes, and tell yourself that you will spend the time fully focused on the one task. When the timer goes off, you can put a satisfying tick next to that task on your list. This is known as the Pomodoro Technique, and you can read more about this here: https://francescocirillo.com/pages/pomodoro-technique. You may not complete the task in the 25 minutes, but if you manage to at least start it, that will be a huge help when you do return to it.
Be realistic about what you can achieve. It’s all very well planning to be super productive, but do listen to your body too. It’s OK not to be OK, and if you need a quiet day where you stay in your PJs all day and binge watch your favourite Netflix show, that is perfectly fine. Know that you are not alone! Recharging your mind is important and it will allow you to take on the next day with more sense of purpose.
Audition Oracle – Thu 23 Apr 2020 @ 9:28
During the current pandemic, we have all seen our news feeds fill up with musical offerings from our favourite artists. Here’s 5 handy apps you can use to unleash and share your creative flare from the safety of your living room! One of our favourite creations to date is this fabulous performance by the wonderful soprano Louise Alder:
🐷🐎🐥🐄... The Louloubelles. Arrangement by Ross Baum and Ben Holtzman. Rarrangwd by L.Alder. Happy Easter y’all. 💋🎶 https://t.co/VQnlRESZSH
The most popular of the 5 apps we found, probably because it is very easy to use. It provides a simple way to create a capella videos, and with the free version you can record songs up to 10 minutes in length. It’s a great tool for beginners and people who are new to making music using technology.
Another free app, Spire is great for people who want to experiment with multi-tracking. Unlike Acapella, Spire creates audio rather than video, but is much more functional in terms of what you can do with layering and mixing.
Made by the same company as Acapella, this is a video and collage editor which allows you to add up to 4 prerecorded videos rather than having to record each video live into the app. Useful if you’re going a step further and creating a musical extravaganza!
A highly rated app, this one is great for mixing music, recording live tracks and creating loops and samples with their preinstalled sounds. The basic app includes 16 free instruments and 100 loops. If you become a member, you can access new sounds released every month.
Available for free on all Apple devices, Garageband makes it easy to record and mix music. Apple’s built in sound and loop library is always growing, and you can also learn to play the guitar or piano with their 40 basic lessons!