Sound Effects Choir

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The Hollywood Film Chorale Sound Effects Choir, also popularly known as the Honda Choir, is an ensemble that can physically produce human sound effects without electronic means. They are well known for two performances in a Honda commercial and at the Academy Awards. It is conducted by Steve Sidwell, who is also the composer of their repertoire.[1]

Production of Effects[edit]

Sound effects are produced primarily by means of using the mouth;[2] the arms, fingers, and hands are also sometimes used. For example, the performers would tap their fingernails against their teeth to simulate rain falling on a car's windshield.[3] To simulate wind, one would quickly blow air. To imitate the sound of tires squealing, a soprano would make a high-pitched screeching sound.


The ensemble was featured in a television advertisement for a Honda Civic in 2006 called Choir, which gained immense popularity.[3] The advertisement was made by the company Wieden and Kennedy,[1] and shown mainly at countries in Europe such as the United Kingdom. This performance consisted of sixty vocalists and was filmed in a car park in late November 2005.

In February 2007, the Choir also appeared as performers in the 79th Academy Awards, producing sound effects to a collection of different film clips in a piece called Elements and Motion.[4] A video of these movie clips was shown behind the forty-person choir as they performed in Kodak Theater.[5] Although much praise was given to this particular performance, it has received some criticism of not reaching the high expectations set in any Academy Award festival.[6]


The Honda Civic television commercial that the Sound Effects choir was featured in won the Gold Lion award in the Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival, generally regarded as the most prestigious international advertising festival. The advertisement was a contender for the Grand Prix during this event.[7]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Honda Choir goes Hollywood". 2007-02-27. Retrieved 2007-03-04. 
  2. ^ "Honda commercial with human sound effects chorus". Boing Boing. 2006-01-09. Retrieved 2007-03-04. 
  3. ^ a b Rybak, Deborah Caulfield (2006-10-02). "Entertaining commercials? ; Coming to a theater near us: A show of TV ads that are actually TiVo- worthy.". Star Tribune. p. 1. E. 
  4. ^ Louis J. Horvitz; producer: Laura Ziskin (2007-02-25). 79th Academy Awards (Television Live Broadcast). United States: American Broadcasting Company. 
  5. ^ "The Oscars: minute-by-minute: Telegraph film critic David Gritten provides immediate coverage of all the awards ceremony action". Telegraph Media Group. 2007-02-26. Retrieved 2007-03-07. 
  6. ^ Silverman, Stephen M. (2007-02-26). "Critics Split Over Ellen's Oscars Performance". People. TIME. Retrieved 2007-03-07. 
  7. ^ Howard, Theresa (2006-06-26). "U.S. ties for most awards, but others walk away with big wins in Film". USA Today. Retrieved 2007-03-07. 

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