Why Your Choir Should Buy An iPad: Parties Made Easy

In the first post in this series, we talked about why my choir, Boston Choral Ensemble, decided to purchase our first iPad, and how forScore helped digitize our library of sheet music. The second post described how Square Register helped revolutionize the way we sell tickets and collect donations. This post talks about how your iPad can become a multifunctional party accessory.

SimpleBooth in action.

SimpleBooth in action.

Photobooth Apps

For our 15th anniversary concert, our iPad pulled triple duty: selling tickets and collecting donations before the concert, selling raffle tickets during intermission, and providing entertainment during the post-concert reception.

With a simple tripod and a tripod mount, our iPad transformed into a photobooth. iPad’s front-facing camera and large screen provided an interactive, keepsake-making experience for our audience.

Several good photobooth apps exist for iPad, ranging from very cheap to over fifty dollars. Pocketbooth ($0.99) is a good app and allows some social media and email integration, but its interface is a bit complex. SimpleBooth ($59.99) is marketed as a photobooth for professional events with corresponding branding options. Setup options are much more flexible, and can allow you to automatically tweet photos or have the user email or print them. SimpleBooth created a Do-It-Yourself guide that can be generalized for almost any photobooth app scenario.

If you don’t need social media or email integration, the best option might be iPad’s built-in camera app. If you choose the front facing camera and turn on a 3 or 10 second delay, the camera app works much like a traditional photobooth. Just remember to have a signup sheet to collect email addresses so you can share the photos at a later date!

For our reception, we provided a festive background in one corner of the room along with some photo props (silly moustaches and fake hats), used Guided Access to lock our iPad into the photobooth app, and people immediately lined up to take pictures. It was a big success!

Coming soon: Part 4 - Productivity Apps and Accessories

Alex Speir is President of Boston Choral Ensemble, a 40 member amateur, professional quality choir. In the past three years, BCE has grown their audience by 25%, increased revenue by 50%, launched several iterations and countless enhancements to their website, moved their operations entirely to the cloud, recorded a new cd, commissioned a new composition each year, transitioned marketing from print first to online and social media first, and hired their first paid, non-artistic staff member. You can reach Alex at president@bostonchoral.org.

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