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NZCF guidelines for rehearsals under Alert Level 1

All of New Zealand is now at Alert Level 1, as of 8 October 2020.


There are currently no limits on the number of people at a gathering, which means that choirs in all parts of the country are able to rehearse and present concerts. However, we strongly encourage choirs to maintain records to enable contact tracing, should COVID-19 reappear in our community. It is also important to maintain good hygiene practices to ensure we all stay healthy.

Please note: We at NZCF are not health or legal professionals. Please do not consider this medical or legal advice. These guidelines are based on the NZ Government guidelines and advice we have received from Professor Michael Baker. We will update this page as and when the government guidelines change.

Alert Level 3 – choirs may not rehearse.

Alert Level 2 – all the guidelines below apply

Alert Level 1 – spacing of singers, length of rehearsals and physical contact can be relaxed


Stay home if you are at all unwell

Choir management should reserve the right to turn away a singer displaying signs of being unwell.

Singers may consider carrying out their own temperature checks before attending rehearsals.


Contact tracing

Ensure that attendance registers are accurately recorded and contact lists are kept up to date. Ensure there are sign-in forms at the door (singers should use their own pens) and contact lists are kept up to date. Taking a photo at rehearsals may be an additional means of recording attendance.


Wash/sanitise hands

Ensure there is access to hand washing/hand sanitiser at the door to the rehearsal room and in the bathrooms.


Coughs & sneezes 

Sneeze and cough into your elbow – this is good practice no matter the bug.


Space out at rehearsals

2 metres between singers, both side to side and front to back. The conductor should stand as far back from the choir as practicable. Don’t sing in a circle formation – all the singers should face forward.


Length of rehearsals

A maximum of 2 hours to limit exposure to the virus.


Ventilation in rehearsal rooms

Ensure adequate ventilation, with a minimum room temperature of 18°C.


Snacks & drinks

No sharing of snacks or drinks before, during or after rehearsals.


Limit physical contact

Singers should not pass around music or folders. If music needs to be passed out it should be done by one or two people who use hand sanitiser before touching the copies to be handed out.



Choir members who have travelled overseas and have completed the 2-week mandatory quarantine should communicate with choir management before returning to rehearsals.

Choirs may consider recording rehearsals for those who cannot attend. This will encourage members to exercise greater caution and to stay at home if remotely unwell.

Remember that members of your choir will have different reactions and levels of anxiety with the return to Alert Level 2. Some may not feel comfortable coming to rehearsals. Please be kind.