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Safe Singing in a COVID-19 Environment

The NZCF is committed to providing guidance to choirs in New Zealand as they plan and carry out rehearsals and performances during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Our Objectives:

– Provide as safe an environment as we can for all participants.

– Conform to the advice and directives of health authorities.

– Clearly model appropriate behaviour in NZCF-run activities and all public offerings.

– Provide ongoing support for our members and the wider choral community.

– Provide support for individual choirs to negotiate safe singing practices to suit the needs of their own communities.


This page is a hub for information relating to singing safely in a COVID-19 environment – click on the links below for more information and detailed guidelines to assist you and your choir.


The ‘traffic light’ COVID-19 Protection Framework

On 3 December, the Government’s 3-level ‘traffic light’ system came into effect. Choir rehearsals and performances fall under the government’s Events Guidelines. We have created a web page explaining the implications of the new framework for choir rehearsals and performances.
For more information, go to this page: Choirs & the Covid-19 Traffic Light Framework


Deciding whether to implement a vaccine mandate for your choir

NZCF stands firmly behind vaccination as a means of protecting the health of our community and the wider performing arts. We support public health education efforts that offer accurate information about vaccine efficacy and safety. We also know that singing increases the transmission of aerosols and therefore increases the risk of contracting and transmitting COVID-19 to others.

There can be no universal approach to the difficult decision-making process ahead of choirs as they decide whether or not to implement a vaccine mandate. Every choir’s culture and environment is different, but consultation and communication are key. A suggested framework for approaching decision-making uses the lens of three concentric circles, starting with the broader legislative context, then your community, and finally your choir at the centre.
Click here to download NZCF’s recommended framework for making decisions about vaccine mandates


Masks for singing

We have compiled some useful information about masks for singers, including where to purchase them in New Zealand, and how to make your own. This information is based on the extensive ongoing research of Canadian singer and choral director Joan Fearnley.
Visit our Masks for Singers page


Other articles of interest 

Here is a selection of articles that you may find informative regarding singing in a COVID-19 environment:

“Reopening Decisions: How Choral Leaders Are Bringing Singers Back Together” by Holly Keller, published by Chorus America

“Reducing bioaerosol emissions and exposures in the performing arts: A scientific roadmap for a safe return from COVID-19” an emissions study conducted at Colorado State University, with research supported by the American Choral Directors Association and Chorus America

“Looking back: Were masks used in COVID-19 outbreaks in choirs?” by Joan Fearnley, published by Choral Canada