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Classical Singers and COVID-19: A Preliminary Report

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Larry ZazzoORCiD, Dr Adam Behr



This is the final published version of an article that has been published in its final definitive form by JMHW, 2021.

For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.


Classical singers are part of a fragile ecosystem of live music performance that is only slowly coming out of deep-freeze during the current COVID-19 crisis, and that will likely suffer long-term consequences as social-distancing measures and audiences' fear of crowds inhibit attendance at live performances for years to come. Here we present preliminary findings on how COVID-19 has impacted the physical, mental, creative and professional wellbeing of a small cohort of professional classical solo singers. As part of a two-year study that began in July 2020, individual interviews exploring self-rated wellbeing are here collated and analysed within the context of the PERMA model for wellbeing. Results thus far are largely consistent with other studies of physical and mental health during COVID-19, especially that of performing arts professionals, with preliminary evidence that a negative wellbeing impact is falling disproportionately on younger, early career singers. Signs of resilience and adaptability in this cohort counterbalance largely negative experiences of social media and online streaming, with an uncertain medium-term outlook for this particular cultural industry.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Zazzo L, Behr A

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Journal of Music, Health and Wellbeing

Year: 2021

Volume: Autumn 2021

Print publication date: 01/09/2021

Online publication date: 30/06/2021

Acceptance date: 22/03/2021

Date deposited: 01/02/2022

ISSN (electronic): 2515-981X

Publisher: JMHW