A virtual choir competition for youth


With the aim of giving youngsters a chance to showcase their talent and also create a sense of unity, the St Inez Parish Youth Movement is organising a virtual choir competition for the youth across Goa


The pandemic situation and subsequent lockdown has had people confined indoors, unable to meet each other or participate together in worship. Religious groups have also been less active. And thus, in order to rejuvenate people’s spirits, the St Inez Parish Youth Movement is organising a virtual choir competition for youth across the state.

“These days we see a lot of people putting up music videos and song covers online. And that is how the concept of a virtual choir contest came to mind,” says president, St Inez Parish Youth Movement, Rizzio De Noronha. Noronha took the idea to the rest of his youth group members. “I also spoke to the parish priest Fr Albano Fernandes and assistant parish priest and youth animator, Fr Valeriano Andrade and we discussed some ground rules for the competition,” says Noronha.

Open to youth across Goa, groups of minimum eight members, will have to record the audio and video for their entries from their homes, put it together and sent in the entries via Google Drive. The hymns can be in English, Konkani, Hindi and Marathi, with the maximum duration of the video set at five minutes. “The entries will be judged on creativity, audio and video quality, attire, voices, etc,” says Noronha, adding that a maximum of five instruments will be allowed. Groups can also send in original hymns or do medleys.

“To ensure that groups do not send in videos that have already been done previously, they will have to display the competition hashtag – #YOUSING – in the video,” says Noronha.

These entries will then be uploaded on the youth group’s FB and Instagram page and also on YouTube. “The likes and number of views on all platforms will be taken into consideration. There will be cash prizes for first, second and third place. We are also looking at having a prize for most number of likes on social media,” says Noronha.

“We hope that through this initiative we can create a stage for young talent and content creators, while also uniting people and increasing interaction,” says Noronha, who believes that worship activities for youth should have a more digital presence now as the net has become a major part of our lives. “There needs to be more digital presence in a time like this when people can’t move about. Otherwise too, we could keep it on 50:50 basis,” he says, adding that youth groups in church used to be stronger before. “Now many youth are moving out of Goa, and so the numbers are decreasing. It is harder to get the youth together because they are busy with work. However, some parishes still have a good youth presence,” he says.

Registration for the contest is expected to open on May 17 and will remain open till May 30. The finished videos will have to be sent in by June 6. The date for declaration of results is yet to be finalised.