Virtual Listening Party

Give producers a platform to share their projects with their peers – building self-confidence

We’ve all had to adapt our programs as we’ve transitioned to virtual programming – one challenge has been creating opportunities for participants to share what they’ve been working on while receiving feedback from their peers. Virtual Listening Parties are regular Zoom meetings in an “open mic” night format that give producers, songwriters and instrumentalists the opportunity to showcase their talents and creativity. Hosted by the staff or youth, participants submit their songs or projects ahead of time to build a “set list” that keeps the party going. Attendees are encouraged to support their friends by dancing along, dropping a comment in chat or simply lending a supportive ear.

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How to… 


  • Pick and promote a date for your participants to showcase their work during a “Listening Party” 
  • Collect youth tracks and projects ahead of time leading up to the Listening Party
    • Time Frame is up to you (e.g. weekly, monthly or every 2-3 weeks, etc) 
  • Staff create a “set list” of original songs or projects (bounced files are cued up)
  • Invite EVERYONE (Send Zoom meeting information) 
    • Invite performers AND participants not involved as audience members – Could help:  
      • Increase motivation for participants to join next time 
      • Inspire youth to sign up for production class or create a project of their own
      • Become a recruiting tool for other virtual music programs 
    • Also invite Parents/supports (if appropriate) 

Hosting the Listening Party 

  • Decide on an emcee or host (e.g. Music Staff, Youth/teen participants, or combination of both) 
  • Play the track 
    • Give a brief introduction to each song/performer – then play the track (via screen share) 
    • Audience should share encouraging comments in the chat 
      • Provides real-time feedback 
      • Boosts self-confidence of performers/presenters
      • Can help to facilitate a Q&A between performers and audience 
  • Keep things moving quickly between acts
  • If there is extra time, let others share
    • Like an “open mic” night allow participants who were reluctant to sign up share as well
  • Promote your programs, schedule and opportunities 
    • Share your virtual program schedule and opportunities 
    • Share the date of your next Listening Party 
    • Share contact information if participants have questions 
    • Share other ways they can get involved
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