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.”
Making Music, The National Federation of Music Societies
A company limited by guarantee, registered in England and Wales no. 308632
Registered Charity in England and Wales no. 249219 and in Scotland no. SC038849
Notes to editors
Making Music has championed leisure-time music groups since 1935 across the UK with practical services, artistic development opportunities and by providing a collective voice for its members. We represent over 3,500 groups made up of around 190,000 musicians of all types, genres and abilities. We help them run their groups so they can get on with making music! www.makingmusic.org.uk | email@example.com
The Association of British Choral Directors (abcd) is the only UK organisation devoted entirely to supporting those leading choral music, amateur and professional. It is committed to promoting opportunities for the professional development of everyone leading singing, in the classroom or the community, and runs an extensive programme of courses, as well as providing advice and support for all choral leaders. www.abcd.org.uk | firstname.lastname@example.org
WellRehearsed app FAQs:
- What is the purpose of WellRehearsed?
The data collected from the app will show the safety of group music making when suitable mitigations are followed by comparing the number of reported group music events with the number of reports of infections attributed to group music making.
If an infection is reported following a rehearsal, the app will help identify possible causes, enabling Making Music and abcd to update their guidance and helping other music groups to adapt their practice. The app is designed for reporting on rehearsal situations only, not performances.
- Who should use it?
The app is for one person in the group to use consistently. If possible, that should be the person responsible for the group's Covid-19 risk management.
- How does it work?
Users answer two simple questions about six days after your last rehearsal, or the day before your next rehearsal is scheduled: ‘Has your choir/music group met for a rehearsal in the last week?' And ‘Were any infections subsequently reported by persons attending it?’
It takes less than a minute to send a report. Once you have reported, the app will tell you when you last reported. If an infection associated with the event is reported, you will be asked some further questions about the circumstances and the mitigations employed for the event. You can input multiple groups of different kinds. When a sufficient amount of data has been collected, users will be able to view statistics on the abcd website via the app.
- Is it anonymous?
Yes. Only generic information is requested about the type of group, age range of participants, and the region in which it operates. The information will be used solely to compile statistics on group music making during the Covid-19 pandemic. No personal data is stored.