Government advise for OOSS for the Performing Arts
Music, dance, and drama provision
Teaching music, dance, and drama can be particularly valuable for supporting children’s wellbeing and helping them to build more self-confidence.
Music lessons in private homes can take place, following the protective measures in this guidance, and additionally following the government guidance for working in homes. However, there may be an additional risk of infection in environments where singing, chanting, playing wind or brass instruments, dance, or drama take place. There is now some evidence that additional risk can build from aerosol transmission with volume and, in particular, with the combined numbers of individuals within a confined space. This is particularly evident for singing and shouting.
When planning this provision, you should therefore consider additional safety measures; and should ensure you follow the measures in this guidance and read the guidance on working safely in performing arts to reduce any risks of aerosol transmission.
Minimising contact between individuals
You should take particular care in music, dance, and drama activities to observe social distancing where possible. This may mean you need to have groups smaller than 15 when indoors. It will also prevent physical correction by teachers and contact between children and young people in dance and drama.
Measures you can take to reduce the risk of transmission and infection during these activities include:
- limiting the number of children singing or playing
- ensuring children are in groups of no more than 15 if they are indoors, if the activity is taking place outdoors, this can happen in groups of any number
- making sure children are socially distanced at all times (2 metres apart), are outside or in a well-ventilated room
- activities that can create aerosol are discouraged, such as shouting or singing loudly
- keep any background or accompanying music to levels which do not encourage teachers or other performers to raise their voices unduly
When children are singing or playing wind or brass instruments, you should also ensure:
- children sit down where possible to help maintain social distancing
- back-to-back or side-to-side positioning (rather than face-to-face) is used whenever possible, to ensure for example, air from instruments does not blow on to another player
- use microphones where possible or encourage children to sing quietly - if possible, do not share microphones; if they are shared, follow the guidance on handling equipment and instruments
- if indoors, use a room with as much space as possible, for example, larger rooms; rooms with high ceilings are expected to enable dilution of aerosol transmission
- limit the number of children to maintain social distancing and increase space ventilation.
- improve ventilation whenever possible, through the use of mechanical systems or opening windows and doors
- limit the length of activity as far as possible, considering the need for breaks
Providers should not host performances with an audience. The intention is that this will be permitted from step 3 of the roadmap (no earlier than 17 May). This is subject to review and further guidance will be provided in advance of step 3.
Please note this is taken from GOV.UK
By Lynn Beaumont