Developing Pitch and Harmony Skills in Young Choir Singers: A Comprehensive Guide

If you are a part of a choir then developing pitch and harmony skills is crucial especially for young choir singers. In order to enhance the overall sound and musicality of a choir, every singer must be able to confidently navigate pitch and harmonise with their fellow singers.

What happens in a choir setting is, when the pitch is on point and the harmony between two or more vocal parts is flawless in an arrangement, the presentation has more feeling, depth, texture. So, these elements add a sense of tranquillity to a song. In fact, if you closely listen to some well produced choir songs it can even cause a physical sensation such as goosebumps and emotional connect amongst the listeners.

Having said that, if you’re a young choir singer seeking to improve your skills, this comprehensive guide will provide valuable insights and techniques to develop pitch and harmony skills effectively.

The Importance of Pitch in Choral Singing

Pitch is the foundation of music, and it plays a vital role in choral singing. For young choir singers, having a solid sense of pitch is essential for accurate intonation and creating harmonies. Here are a few strategies to help young singers develop their pitch:

  1. Ear Training: Encourage singers to develop their listening skills by engaging in ear training exercises. These exercises can include interval recognition, melodic dictation, and singing in unison to match pitch with a reference note.
  2. Solfege: Introduce the solfege system, such as the movable Do solfege, to help young singers internalise pitch relationships. Practising solfege exercises helps develop a strong sense of relative pitch, enabling singers to accurately sing intervals and melodies.
  3. Vocal Warm-ups: Begin each rehearsal or practice session with vocal warm-ups that focus on pitch accuracy. Incorporate exercises like sirens, scales, and arpeggios to help singers develop their vocal range and pitch control.

Understanding Harmony and Its Role in Choral Singing

Harmony is the art of combining different pitches to create a pleasing and supportive sound. It adds depth, texture, and emotional richness to choral music. Here are key strategies to develop harmony skills in young choir singers:

  1. Interval Training: Teach singers to recognize and sing different intervals. Practice singing harmonies in parallel, ascending, and descending motion. This exercise helps singers develop their ability to hear and perform harmonies accurately.
  2. Sectional Singing: Encourage singers to rehearse in smaller groups within their voice sections. This allows them to focus on blending their voices with others and understanding their individual part’s role within the overall harmony.
  3. Repertoire Selection: Choose repertoire that incorporates various harmonies, such as rounds, canons, and pieces with simple two- or three-part harmonies. Gradually progress to more complex pieces as singers develop their skills.

Techniques to Enhance Pitch and Harmony Skills

To further enhance pitch and harmony skills, here are advanced techniques that can benefit young choir singers:

  1. Vocal Modelling: Use recordings of professional choirs or skilled vocalists as examples for young singers to emulate. Encourage them to listen closely to the pitch and harmonies, and strive to replicate the same level of precision.
  2. Sight Singing: Incorporate sight-singing exercises into rehearsals, enabling young singers to read and perform music without prior preparation. This practice enhances their ability to recognize intervals and harmonise on the spot.
  3. Vocal Blending: Teach singers to match the tone quality, dynamics, and vowel placement of those singing around them. Vocal blending creates a unified sound, where individual voices seamlessly meld together.
  4. Chord Analysis: Introduce basic music theory concepts to young singers, including chord analysis. Understanding chord progressions helps singers anticipate and navigate harmonies more effectively.

Performance and Feedback

Regular performance opportunities are essential for young choir singers to apply their pitch and harmony skills in a practical setting. Here are some strategies to foster growth through performance:

  1. Concerts and Competitions: Organise regular concerts and encourage participation in local choir competitions. These experiences provide valuable exposure and motivation for singers to continue developing their skills.
  2. Peer Evaluation: Encourage singers to provide constructive feedback to their peers. This practice cultivates a supportive environment and promotes growth through collaboration.
  3. Vocal Coach or Music Educator Feedback: Seek feedback from experienced vocal coaches or music educators. Their expert guidance can identify areas of improvement and provide tailored advice to further enhance pitch and harmony skills.

Related Read: How to Overcome Performance Anxiety In Choir Singing


Developing pitch and harmony skills is a continuous journey for young choir singers. Through ear training, solfege, vocal warm-ups, and other techniques, young singers can cultivate a strong sense of pitch. Understanding harmony, practising sectional singing, and exploring advanced techniques further enhance their ability to harmonise effectively.

Regular performance opportunities and constructive feedback help young choir singers refine their skills and achieve musical excellence. With consistent practice and guidance, young choir singers can develop their pitch and harmony skills, enriching their choral experience and fostering a lifelong love for music.


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