WellRehearsed app launched to collect data on the Covid safety of leisure-time music groups rehearsing in person
Making Music, the UK’s membership organisation for leisure-time music groups, and abcd, the Association of British Choral Directors, have launched a new free app to help gather statistics on vocal and instrumental group music making activities during the pandemic.
Available on iOS and Android, WellRehearsed has been developed as a simple-to-use monitoring tool for amateur music groups of all kinds, anywhere in the UK. The app does not collect personal data and asks two short anonymous questions:
- Has your choir/music group met for a rehearsal in the last week?
- Were any infections subsequently reported by persons attending it?
Currently, most guidance is based on studies of choir-related Covid outbreaks from a time when understanding about Covid aerosol transmission and mitigations was not as advanced as it is now. While the safety of group members is paramount, so far real-time information has been lacking about the effectiveness of the mitigations now being used by vocal and instrumental groups, and whether there have been infections from groups meeting in person.
WellRehearsed has been developed by abcd and Making Music in conjunction with choral expert Professor Martin Ashley, who has advised many music organisations on their risk management over the last year.
Professor Martin Ashley said:
“We’re all looking forward to a full resumption of music activity, but the need for vigilance has not gone away and careful monitoring and prompt action is essential. Our governments will take care of much of this, but we in the music world have a duty not only to monitor our activities, but to provide the best possible information as quickly as possible should anything untoward occur. The easiest and most effective way of doing this is through the WellRehearsed app. It takes less than a minute to submit an anonymous weekly report confirming that all is well. Should a problem be identified, the questions WellRehearsed will then ask you will save hours of painful, forensic head scratching.”
Barbara Eifler, Making Music Chief Executive, said:
“This app is a game-changer – it will allow big quantities of real-time data to be gathered, allowing us and government agencies to see what the statistical likelihood of Covid transmission at in-person indoor rehearsals actually is, and if it does occur, what risk mitigations had been in place. This usefully complements computer-modelling. WellRehearsed will also allow Making Music, abcd and other sector organisations to quickly revise and improve guidance and protocols for non-professional music groups, should a Covid-transmission have occurred.”
Rachel Greaves, abcd General Secretary, said:
“Our app is quick and simple for anyone to use. By contributing regular data, choirs across the UK can help us make the case for safe singing in a vital way.”