Hard-wired to humanity, nothing gets to the heart of music like the human voice – and our most anticipated release to date is a choir that captures the breathtaking range of our most personal musical instrument. Crafted and conducted by Grammy winner Eric Whitacre and showcasing his elite family of singers, this encyclopaedia of the voice will enrich your compositions.
With these sounds at your fingertips, you will start to think differently about the human voice. Go beyond the choral cliches of sacred, angelic and apocalyptic, using these sounds to add depth, beauty, grit, emotion, or suspense. Recorded in the widescreen resonance of The Hall at AIR Studios, Eric Whitacre Choir shares the acoustic DNA of Spitfire’s orchestral range and is designed to complement and blend seamlessly with each of these libraries — all presented in our easy to use, award-winning dedicated plugin, including an Evo Grid for instant inspiration.
Tendrils Of Light - Shruthi Rajasekar (0:00 / 2:52)
Silver Locket - Paul Thomson (0:00 / 2:36)
Surrender - Snorri Hallgrímsson (0:00 / 4:33)
Paradigm Shift ii — Christian Henson (0:00 / 3:19)
Chimera — Louis Rugg (feat. BBC Symphony Orchestra) (0:00 / 2:26)
In The Night They Came - Paul Saunderson (0:00 / 5:55)
Back Home With Tales — Homay Schmitz (0:00 / 2:49)
Middle Of The Earth — Oliver Patrice Weder (0:00 / 2:36)
As We Breathe — Homay Schmitz (0:00 / 1:05)
Lead Pipe — Louis Rugg (feat. Albion ONE & Symphonic Strings) (0:00 / 1:38)
Holding Fast — Homay Schmitz (feat. Studio Orchestra, Albion ONE, Hans Zimmer Piano) (0:00 / 2:26)
Trailer Music — Homay Schmitz (0:00 / 0:59)
Nostalgia — Oliver Patrice Weder (0:00 / 2:33)
When Spitfire founders Paul and Christian approached Eric with the idea of sampling his choir, Eric realised this was the perfect vehicle with which to free composers from preconceptions about the voice, and how it can be used in music. He found himself at home with the microscopic detail of sampling, reflecting his approach to composing, with which he crafts every thread of every sound with acute attention to detail. Over weeks of recording, Eric conducted his choir for every sound in this Spitfire library, conjuring sounds that range from familiar vocal techniques, including vowels and open vocalisations whose harmonic content transforms with changes in mouth shape, through to more unusual articulations, including shorts and rhythmic passages.
Eric Whitacre Choir is one of our biggest libraries, filling 200GB of audio, and now NKS ready. We’ve taken a decade of sampling experience and applied this approach to give composers and producers a choral library that uses voices just like another section of your orchestra. In addition to a full orchestral set of samples, we have also recorded a stunning Evo Grid, with each element sculpted by Eric. With the help of design and user experience-agency ustwo (Monument Valley, DICE), Eric Whitacre Choir is housed in a bespoke, self-contained plug-in (VST2, VST3, AU, AAX), developed primarily for composers, by composers. A composition tool that’s easy to use, intuitive and inspiring.
There are 22 singers in total: six soprano, five alto, five tenor and six bass. In the Choir section you will find a total of 170 techniques, while the Evo Grid packs 111 Evolutions.
Where the choir meets Spitfire’s unique Evo Grid technology, a new instrument is born – one that so impressed Eric, he said, “Frankly, I wish I could compose like this in everyday life.” Simple in principle, inspiring in practice, the grid takes samples that change in different ways over time and arranges them across the keyboard. Play a single gesture or chord and it will weave a micro-composition that never stands still. Construct your own evolution, or hit the randomise button to automatically generate a unique instrument from an almost infinite array of possibilities. Always original, and always musical.
“The idea is that you can take up to three or four of these Evolutions and combine them,” says Eric, “or cycle through them as one of them evolves, and suddenly you’re painting music in a totally different way, sculpting sound in real time. You can create minutes of profoundly beautiful music in this way.”
There was only one place we could capture the magic of this aesthetic. For Eric Whitacre Choir, we returned to Spitfire’s spiritual recording home: The Hall at AIR Studios – the scene of countless blockbuster film score recordings, and the majority of the Spitfire catalogue. “It was magical,” says Eric. “It must be my favourite recording room in the world. Something about the atmosphere in there, it’s absolutely perfect for voices. It’s got just the right amount of bloom, and the spiritual uplift of its original intention as a church.” The choir has been captured via the most sought-after microphones, pristine preamps and legendary tape machines by world-renowned engineer Jake Jackson.
Listening to Eric’s music, you wouldn’t imagine he grew up in Nevada, surrounded by the dust of the desert. It is a landscape that seems alien to the traditional view of choral music. Yet these open spaces and huge skies have helped create his unique sound. “It somehow found its way into my sense of aesthetic, and even into making the sample library. There’s a lot of the open desert in there. What I love about the west coast of America and the desert is that it is pregnant with possibility, and that found its way into the sound.” After high school, which was spent writing electronica and listening to Kraftwerk and Depeche Mode, Eric went to study in Las Vegas and – on a whim – joined a choir. “It absolutely changed my life. I thought, that’s the sound that’s been in my heart my whole life. It was a singular moment and it absolutely transformed me.”
As conductor of the Eric Whitacre Singers, he has released several chart-topping albums, including 2010’s best-selling Light and Gold. A sought-after guest conductor, Eric has conducted choral and instrumental concerts around the globe, including concerts with the London Symphony Orchestra, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and the Minnesota Orchestra. In addition to several collaborations with Hollywood composer Hans Zimmer, he has worked with British pop icons Laura Mvula, Imogen Heap and Annie Lennox.
The Eric Whitacre Singers have established themselves as one of the finest ensembles. This professional choir hand draws in audiences with a wide spectrum of age, interests and backgrounds, performing Monteverdi and Bach to Whitacre, Lauridsen and Britten. They received unanimous praise from critics and won a Grammy award for Best Choral Performance for their debut album, Light & Gold on Decca/Universal.