In the new era of social isolation, Ballina’s renowned Moy Singers choir has managed to stay ‘in tune’ by going online.
Their highly-anticipated annual spring concert, which was due to take place on Saturday, April 4 next, is one of the countless social events to fall foul of the Covid-19 preventative measures. The choir had put in many long hours preparing for the event but all that changed with the arrival of the virus in Ireland.
For the first time in 34 years, the singers have had to suspend their weekly meet-ups for practice. It’s a necessary but heartbreaking measure. A planned trip to Croatia this summer is also in question.
Singing, friendship and camaraderie are frequently among the chief attractions that draw people to joining a choir and the members of the Moy Singers are no different.
Their weekly two-hour practices are not just about perfecting notes and learning song lyrics, they are also a much-valued social outlet where friends with a shared love of music get to meet up, chat and enjoy a cuppa.
Singing in a group is a proven way to stimulate the brain, alleviate stress and make new friends.
But not even a global pandemic can dampen the spirits of the Moy Singers which have raised substantial funds for many worthy causes over the years.
Weekly Wednesday rehearsals have now become a virtual event thanks to video conferencing software.
Choir chairperson, Louise McDonnell, told the Western People: “It is heart-warming to still be able to come together as a group. We see and hear each other and everyone has the opportunity to share what’s going on in their lives. It’s important during these times when we must remain apart to still connect in any way we can.”