Calgary physicians create choir to relieve COVID-19 stress
CALGARY -- Several dozen Calgary physicians have joined together to form a choir to help relieve stress brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Calgary anesthesiologist Dr. Wendy Hall came up with the idea, after seeing a Toronto-area physician’s choir.
"I just put it out there to see if anyone would be interested in forming a choir with me and the response was really overwhelming," Hall told CTV News.
So far, only female physicians are taking part but men are welcome too.
The group conduct rehearsals online, over Zoom, two evenings a week.
"Aside from the connection part of it, which is great for stress release, the actual singing itself is very relaxing," said Hall.
Dr. Michelle Cunningham, one of the physicians taking part, has a daughter in Calgary Youth Singers and brought in Kathryn Parrotta to help lead the practices. Many of the physicians have limited or no musical experience, but things are progressing.
"I think more of the kinks are getting worked out all the time and I think we are all getting braver with our voices. There's quite a few of us who are first-time singers," Cunningham said.
Given the large number of Zoom participants and background noise, most of the rehearsal takes place with only the choir director not on mute.
"Some of them can read music, some of them can't and that’s okay. The good thing is everyone is very comfortable signing on mute and I just assume they’re singing," Parrotta said.
The group is planning on holding in-person rehearsals once it is safe to do so.