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What have I learnt from my Corona Experience?

When corona came to town I didn't know how my business would be affected. I feared the worst, but what I discovered gave me a renewed sense of purpose in these tumultuous times. My expectation was that people would not have time for learning and making music, because they would be consumed by the upheaval and the uncertainty. On the contrary I found that when people are experiencing crisis and their world has been turned upside down, they crave and seek out music even more than normal.

Music makes us feel grounded, bringing us together even when we are physically distanced. Music makes us feel alive, and it makes us feel part of something bigger. Music makes us feel present and brings order to the chaos, meaning to the moment and light to the darkness. The lack of music leaves a void that is hard to fill.

One core part of my week is teaching piano and I was blown away by how seamlessly all my students transitioned to zoom lessons when we had to stop our in person lessons. Not only did they all keep progressing and learning throughout but we had a wonderful virtual concert which they all worked so hard towards and it was a pleasure to be able to share their progress with their families. It was also so special to be able to include grandparents from all around the world in our virtual concert, definitely a corona plus!

I love the chugim (classes) that I do with babies, toddlers and gan aged children and I was so upset that they would have to stop. I was due to start a new session with a group of 8 adorable toddlers just as lockdown hit and of course we had to cancel.

I took the opportunity to do something I had never dared to do before. I recorded myself reading my story song book collection and shared the videos online. I have had so much incredible feedback from families, whose children have been enjoying listening to and singing along with these videos. They have brought joy to people and made them smile and I am so glad that this was one of the unforeseen positive outcomes of my corona experience.

My beautiful women’s choir, The Modiin Songbirds, was forced to stop in person rehearsals but we couldn’t accept the idea of not being able to sing together. These women, whilst looking after their children, supervising home schooling, working from home or dealing with the emotional stress of being furloughed, made the time to put together a virtual choir performance.

Music gave us all a sense of purpose, it gave us direction and focus and it lifted us up amongst the chaos to provide a moment of calm and meaning. With 25,000 views and counting we are currently working on our next Virtual Choir performance, and this time even more women are taking part!

The internet has been filled with music during this time and the longer this goes on the more I understand why. It is a crushing blow to society that we can not gather, that we can not bring our voices together in a person, and I couldn’t be more grateful that the internet affords us an opportunity to make and share music together.

I hope that as we live through this challenging period of upheaval, that we can continue to find ways to make music together, to share music together and to create music together. We should continue to bring music into our homes and our lives so that it can lift us up and bring us joy and hope when we need it most.

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