You can’t go out but everyone Cân Sing!

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Cân Sing—Span Arts’ online singing group—keeps connected throughout the Lockdown.

Since lockdown began, Span Arts have been running Cân Sing: their fortnightly singing group online.

Singers from across Pembrokeshire have been coming together online to share in the uplifting benefits of singing, led by the fabulous natural voice practitioner Catriona Fothergill.

We know that singing helps us to feel good and connect with each other. It makes us breathe deeply and stops our anxious thoughts while we enjoy singing and listening to harmonies.” Says choir leader Cat Fothergill

The project has provided vital support and connection and helped to improve people’s wellbeing at this most difficult time. Singers have found the experience “Stimulating, connecting and heart-warming” with “with just the right mix of warm up, chat and song.”

Cat is such an experienced and attentive choir leader” says Kathryn Lambert, Director of Span Arts “even online, Cat manages to hold a space for everyone, she creates such a warm and friendly atmosphere that everyone feels safe and welcome

SPAN has been thrilled with the positive feedback received and proud that their long standing singing group has been able to find a new way to come together online during the lockdown.  One singer told us that “It was a new, and very novel, experience for me….It felt as though you were here in my lounge with me….singing whilst I watched the sunset….amazing.”

Singers have told SPAN that “It has helped a lot to re-connect with Catriona & the other Singers” and “That was so lovely, really lifted my spirits. As I’m isolating alone and most of the time worrying about my doctor daughter, it was great to see everyone, to have the interaction and to sing.”

The singing workshops have also supported some of our most vulnerable individuals during the lockdown period, with many of the participants living alone.

One 31 year old female from Narberth, who lives with some mental health issues, specifically anxiety and severe mood issues says “I sometime find it hard to connect with people so I cherish my singing groups as they make me feel very welcome and connected.  Singing online soothes all of the issues that I have been struggling with. Because it has been SPAN funded, I have been able to continue attending despite having lost work. Also, singing always eases my anxiety and being able to see and hear the group helps to lessen my feeling of loneliness and disconnect from the community.

Ted, a regular attendee and gifted 26 year old male harmony singer with additional needs, specifically Williams Syndrome, tells us it’s help to making his quality of life better “I am currently not working on any projects or going out anywhere…I do miss singing with people around me but it is fun if we get to do it online.”

“I always feel very physically and mentally uplifted (when singing), so it has been wonderful to be able to continue online – I would have really missed it otherwise. It’s great to see everybody, and sometimes have stayed on for a chat afterwards.” Says one over 65 year old, living alone in Narberth

SPAN is very proud to have been able to provide this creative support service throughout the lockdown period and is pleased to announce that we will be able to sustain the online group with some crisis funding from the Arts Council of Wales.  We are asking people to help out though, and to donate where they can to ensure that SPAN can continue to survive the crisis.

Singing through the coronavirus crisis – BBC

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