I wonder if you've seen this article which is more hopeful about singing? Studies are still at an early stage but it cheered me up this morning!
Full article "Singing might not be so great a risk, after all" extracts below.
"NEW scientific evidence from Germany has cast doubt on the claim that singing constitutes a high-risk activity in the transmission of Covid-19.
Stories about the danger of transmitting the coronavirus through singing have proliferated since the widely reported outbreak of Covid-19 in Washington State, where 53 of the 61 members of the Skagit Valley Chorale fell ill after rehearsals on 3 and 10 March, immediately before lockdown measures. The incident was subsequently correlated with two other “super-spreader” events involving choirs in Amsterdam and Berlin (News, 29 May). An investigation by the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention, however, established that Skagit Valley choir members were sitting six to ten inches from one another, and sharing snacks and stacking chairs together, and that 19 members with “probable symptoms” were never tested.
The one study based on research specifically into the safety of singing in the context of Covid has come from the Institute of Fluid Mechanics and Aerodynamics in Munich: “Singing in choirs and making music with wind instruments - Is that safe during the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic?” In the study, detailed measurement of the ballistic propagation of larger droplets when singing and speaking, and the flow-related spreading of small droplets, was conducted with a professional singer and vocal coach at the Mozarteum in Salzburg, and two amateur choral singers and five professional musicians.
The Munich study concludes: “Air is only set in motion in the immediate vicinity of the mouth when singing. In the case of the professional singer, the experiments showed that at a distance of around 0.5 m, almost no air movement can be detected, regardless of how loud the sound was and what pitch was sung. It is therefore unlikely that the virus could spread beyond this limit via the air flow created during singing.”
The researchers deemed this to be “not surprising, since singing does not expel a large volume of air in jerks like coughing or sneezing”. They concluded, with provisos: “If the findings and recommendations from our quantitative measurements are taken into account, then making music in a community should be relatively safe.”
Similar experiments have been carried out for orchestral instruments, in research commissioned by the Bamberg Symphony Orchestra and the Vienna Philharmonic. The Freiburger Institüt fur Musikermedizin, which previously deemed singing a danger, has now released new guidelines that “Two metres will result in there being no increased risk of infection through droplets.”
They also conclude: “Singing in very large enclosed spaces such as concert halls and church spaces appears to be very favourable.
6/6/2020 03:54:44 pm
A less optimist message is given by Martin Ashley (Editor-in-chief, ABCD Choral Directions Research) in his paper "Where have all the singers gone, and when will they return? Prospects for Choral Singing after the SARS-CoV-2 Pandemic".
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