Kol Zimra customizes interactive and engaging vocal entertainment for each and every celebration and event. Here are answers to frequently asked questions by Kol Zimra clientele:
WHAT MAKES KOL ZIMRA ENTERTAINMENT DIFFERENT AND SPECIAL?
Kol Zimra entertainment is unique because we our style is to enhance your party with music, not interrupt it. You want to schmooze? Schmooze! Eat? Bon appetit! Our specialty is keeping everyone, adults and kids alike, clapping and dancing along with boundless energy and interpersonal engagement.
How do we do it? Kol Zimra’s professionally trained, multi-talented performers are experts at “reading the crowd”—that is, intuiting the best way to entertain you and your guests with music you want at all the right moments, by:
- Opening the room in song, greeting everyone in harmony from the very first moments.
- Strolling and entertaining interpersonally, engaging guests individually, even taking requests (see below).
- Motivating simcha circle dancing (sometimes called a Hora) and line dancing.
- Leading sing-a-longs.
- Guiding ceremonial and religious aspects, e.g. davening/tefilla (i.e. prayer services), Kiddush, Motzee, Benching/Birkat Hamazon, Havdallah, and other traditional Jewish blessings.
In sum, we fill your entire event with wall-to-wall music—and the brightest smiles!
SO, YOU ALSO LEAD PRAYER SERVICES?
Indeed, KZ leads Davening/T’fillot for family gatherings and communities, at shuls (synagogues) and private venues, generating inspirational and engaging harmony that enlivens Shabbat (Sabbath), Yom Tov (festival holidays) and High Holidays services.
SHOULD MUSIC BE A PRIORITY FOR MY PARTY?
The invitations, the décor, the food and the flowers, these things are all important. But what makes the celebration, what gets everyone into it and that everyone will really remember, is the music — and the pitch-perfect glee Kol Zimra generates by singing to, and with, everyone.
WHICH SINGERS WILL COMPRISE THE GROUP THAT WILL PERFORM AT MY EVENT?
Kol Zimra has a roster of more than 150 talented and engaging vocal performers in North America and Israel. With over three decades of experience, Kol Zimra’s principals devote a great deal of time and effort to hand-tailoring each and every group in consultation with its clientele. This ensures consistency while also providing uniqueness to every group that performs. While the line-up of our performers may vary from one ensemble to the next, quality is never compromised and your satisfaction is of utmost importance.
WHO ARE YOUR SINGERS?
Kol Zimra singers are drawn from our large, selective pool of the best vocal harmony performers. They come from a variety of backgrounds—just like your family and guests, which is why they’re so relatable. They are youthful and energetic. They’re personable and likeable. (And to anticipate Bubbe’s first question: yes, many of them are single, do you have a nice match for them?) Most important, they are respectful and professional. You’ll love Kol Zimra like family!
HOW MANY SINGERS DO I NEED? HOW DO YOU DETERMINE THE RIGHT NUMBER FOR ME?
Kol Zimra has a formula that determines the right number of singers for every event, by factoring in the number of guests attending, the size of the room and the duration of the event. In general, we recommend a minimum compliment of six singers, as this sized group is ideal for generating the full harmony blend, energy and volume that energizes an entire room. If the number of guests exceeds 150, we try to maintain a ratio of 1 or 2 singers per every additional 50 guests. It is worth noting that each additional singer adds to the already rich harmonies and repertoire. Thus, the larger the ensemble, the broader the sound and songbook you can expect.
WHERE ARE YOU LOCATED?
Kol Zimra has management and personnel local to Los Angeles and Southern California and the the New York tri-state area. We travel regularly on the East Coast, from New England and Boston to the Baltimore-Washington area and Florida; the Midwest, including Cleveland, Detroit and Chicago; Texas, Arizona and the southwest; Colorado and the mountains; and in Israel, including Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. If we’re not local to you, we’ll gladly come to you, across North America and Canada, Mexico, Israel, South America, Europe, Australia, and even Hong Kong and the Far East.
CAN YOU HELP ME PLAN MY SCHEDULE?
We know that there’s no dress rehearsal for your party. It’s got to be great the first and only time. Kol Zimra is dedicated to help you meet your expectations. In the weeks and days leading up to your date, our managers and directors are available to help you to organize your schedule and/or coordinate with your event planner. We have vast experience from working at hundreds and hundreds of parties and can recommend best practices, such as how to work out the timing for meal courses, dancing and speeches & toasts. When the date of your event arrives, relax and enjoy: Kol Zimra’s got you covered!
MAY I MAKE SONG REQUESTS?
Absolutely! We entertain requests on the spot. If it should happen that we cannot you’re your particular request, we’ll surely know other songs by that artist or in that genre that will equally please you. We also welcome our clients to provide us with a list of top favorite songs, artists and/or genres in advance. But don’t feel any pressure—Kol Zimra comes knowing many favorites, in English, Hebrew and more. That way, we come prepared to deliver. We’re all about pleasing the crowd.
HOW DO I MAKE MY PARTY FLOW?
We’re available to serve as your MC, to move the party along and ensure that things go according to plan. And when, inevitably, something changes, we pivot to the “new plan” so effortlessly and seamlessly that the energy never dips and everyone stays energized and engaged!
CAN I HIRE FEWER SINGERS?
One of the main keys to success is having the right number of singers. Please believe us when we say that fewer singers leads to disappointing results. We have decades of experience in customizing the right sized group for every event.
WHAT I’M REALLY ASKING IS, ARE YOU NEGOTIABLE?
Kol Zimra’s leaders have families themselves. We’re no strangers to the stressful financial realities of living a committed Jewish life. If budget is a concern, talk with us. We will do our best to work with you while still guaranteeing top quality.
MAY I REQUEST SPECIFIC SINGERS? DO I NEED TO?
Kol Zimra’s core expertise is in combining individual performers from our extensive talent pool into a cohesive group that is best suited for you. All Kol Zimra singers are terrific. What makes Kol Zimra special is how our singers work together. While you may request specific singers that you’ve enjoyed at previous parties, you don’t need to. The group is the thing.
HOW DO I KNOW THAT THE GROUP I’M GETTING IS GREAT?
Kol Zimra customizes the perfect blend of talent for you. Customer service is very important to us. That’s why we take the time to talk with you in advance, to get to know you, your tastes and your expectations. Then we craft a group with the sound and playbook that caters to you.
DO YOU LEAD GAMES FOR KIDS?
Kol Zimra personnel includes singers with extensive youth group and camp counselor experience. These performers can be made available to lead games and activities for the children amongst your guests. Of course, singing their favorite songs with Kol Zimra, including the latest hits, is so much fun that they may want just the music!
MAY I SEE A SONG LIST?
Here is a list of song categories. Bear in mind that because Kol Zimra knows so many songs, and everyone’s taste varies widely, it’s challenging to provide a comprehensive track list. Please believe us that when the time comes to choose the right song at the right time for you and your guests, Kol Zimra’s got you covered.
WHAT RESPONSIBILITIES DO I HAVE FOR FOOD, LODGING AND TRANSPORTATION?
We request that singers be provided (or provided for) meals for the duration of their visit. For full Shabbat engagements or those requiring long distance travel, we may require lodging, i.e. home hospitality or hotel. Depending on the means of travel and the distance to your event, for car travel we may request a modest stipend (i.e. for gas/tolls); and for travel out of town, reimbursement of pre-approved travel expenses (e.g. flights, ground transportation). Kol Zimra respects the investment you are making to hire us and we do our best to keep additional expenses to a minimum.
ASIDE FROM THE SINGERS, ARE THERE ANY OTHER PERSONNEL FOR WHICH I’M RESPONSIBLE?
We realize that as hosts, our clients are juggling the myriad needs of their guests and visitors, such as housing and feeding extended family and personal guests. As such, Kol Zimra does its utmost to provide only essential personnel, i.e. the performers themselves, and not ask for additional provisions or inclusion of non-essential personnel, such as spouses or family members.
DO YOU OFFER CO-ED GROUPS? HOW DO THEY DIFFER FROM ALL-MALE GROUPS?
Kol Zimra offers co-ed singing groups that combine men and women performers—perfectly suited, for example, for a bat mitzvah, at which the bat mitzvah girl appreciates having women singers that she can look up to and relate to. Qualitatively, women singers broaden the songbook by enabling the group to perform songs in higher vocal ranges. One consideration is that unamplified women’s voices do not always carry in a crowded room, and you may need more singers. Mostly, deciding between an all-male and a co-ed group is matter of personal preference and religious custom.
DOES KOL ZIMRA HAVE A UNIFORM?
Generally Kol Zimra performers dress in dark suits with white shirts and gold ties (and Kol Zimra kippot (yarmulkes)!). In co-ed configurations, the ladies wear dark dresses with gold accents. This uniform suits all settings, from dining rooms and tented backyards to synagogues and banquet halls (and the White House!).
WHAT’S THE ADVANTAGE OF KOL ZIMRA OVER A DJ OR KLEZMER BAND THAT HAS INSTRUMENTS?
Comparing strolling, interactive a cappella to a klezmer band would be like comparing apples (and honey) to oranges. Whereas a DJ or band is rooted to a stage, Kol Zimra takes the music to the people. We move around and interact interpersonally without any limitations. And we’re not too loud, which will earn the immediate appreciation of the older folks in your crowd.
We liken ourselves your long lost cousins who show up knowing all the great songs and when to sing them. (And looking super-sharp!)
Of course, we frequently work alongside DJs and bands and even offer these services ourselves. See next question.
WHAT OTHER SERVICES DO YOU OFFER: SOUND EQUIPMENT? DJING? DANCE MOTIVATORS? A BAND? GAMES?
All of the above! We specialize in providing vocal entertainment either a cappella (without accompaniment), or with acoustic accompaniment (see our videos for samples). We’re equally expandable to meet your broader party needs, including providing or recommending vendors for sound amplification systems, DJs, bands, games, magicians, and much, much more. Please inquire for details.
DOES KOL ZIMRA PERFORM STAGE SHOWS?
Certainly! Kol Zimra’s personable, interactive performance style translates marvelously to the stage, thrilling audiences of all ages with a set list customized to the target audience of your organization, institution or business. Please inquire for more details.
HOW MAY I PREVIEW KOL ZIMRA BEFORE BOOKING?
Kol Zimra has produced a number of audio and video recordings covering numerous musical genres, styles and configurations. Please visit the audio selections or click on the video links. Also, check out the testimonials of our many happy clients, with more available upon request.
WHEN SHOULD I BOOK KOL ZIMRA?
The sooner the better! With our large pool of talent, we always try our best to accommodate last-minute inquiries, so don’t hesitate to ask. But also don’t wait!
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