Singing and Health
Singing in health contexts typically involves participants with one or more health condition(s) gathering to sing together at weekly rehearsals and sometimes performing within a hospital or health service or in the community. Sessions commonly include a series of warm-up exercises, learning new songs as a group, and singing songs already in the singers’ repertoire. Singing groups may be led by musicians, music educators, music therapists, or community musicians. Typically one or more health professionals are in attendance to support participants who require it. Some health choirs are for patients only while others feature patients and staff, or patients and carers, singing together.
Examples of single condition choirs include the “Sing to Live” choir for people affected by breast cancer in Illinois; the “Brainwaves” and “Stroke a Chord” choirs in Australia for adults who have experienced a stroke; “Sing...
References and Further Reading
- Coulton, S., Clift, S., Skingley, A., & Rodriguez, J. (2015). Effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of community singing on mental health-related quality of life of older people: Randomised controlled trial. The British Journal of Psychiatry, 207(3), 250–255. https://doi.org/10.1192/bjp.bp.113.129908.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Dingle, G., Ellem, R., Davidson, R., Haslam, C., Clift, S., Humby, M., Stathis, A., & Williams, E. (2018). Live wires music program connects and aids cognitive performance of older adults. Paper presented at the Australian Association for cognitive behaviour therapy national conference, Brisbane, 25–27 Oct 2018.Google Scholar
- Lewis, A., Cave, P., Stern, M., Welch, L., Taylor, K., Russell, J., Doyle, A., Russell, A., McKee, H., Clift, S., Bott, J., & Hopkinson, N. S. (2016). Singing for lung health – A systematic review of the literature and consensus statement. NPJ Primary Care Respiratory Medicine, 26, 16080. https://doi.org/10.1038/npjpcrm.2016.80.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- Särkämö, T., Tervaniemi, M., Laitinen, S., Numminen, A., Kurki, M., Johnson, J. K., & Rantanen, P. (2013). Cognitive, emotional, and social benefits of regular musical activities in early dementia: Randomized controlled study. The Gerontologist, 54(4), 634–650. https://doi.org/10.1093/geront/gnt100.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Williams, E., Dingle, G., & Clift, S. (2018). A systematic review of mental health and wellbeing outcomes of group singing for adults with a mental health condition. European Journal of Public Health. https://doi.org/10.1093/eurpub/cky115. Accepted 26 May 2018.