Sources of Aerosol Dispersion During Singing and Potential Safety Procedures for Singers

J Voice. 2021 Apr 10;S0892-1997(21)00101-6. doi: 10.1016/j.jvoice.2021.03.013. Online ahead of print.


Introduction: With respect to the Covid-19 pandemic, singing is assumed to be associated with a high potential person-to-person transmission. However, it remains unclear how the impulse dispersion varies with different types of articulation, intensity levels of diction, or body position. Furthermore, it has not been understood in detail how to prevent aerosol dispersion during singing.

Material and methods: Single professional singers from the Bavarian Radio Chorus were asked to sing in different head positions, with different articulation patterns and different masks after inhaling the basic liquid of an e-cigarette. The vapor cloud was segmented and tracked over time.

Results: Consonants and exaggeration of diction enhanced the distance reached by the impulse dispersion. Furthermore, the greatest dispersion was reached for a neutral head position. All protection masks stopped the initial jet of the aerosols but the FFP2 masks were the most effective.

Conclusion: Some protection equipment has been identified to be promising in reducing aerosol dispersion. However, systematic effects have to be evaluated in greater collectives.

Keywords: SingErs—AeroSols—COVID-19.