New Style of Mask Could Be Just What Singers Need
The last thing singers want is for the fabric to rub up against their faces as they sing. For choir singers that have to practice or perform with a mask, a breakthrough could be on the way.
A college choir director in West Virginia has created a facemask that may make it easier for singers to perform while obeying rules about mask-wearing.
West Virginia University Choral Director Kym Scott created a mask that she says works well for singers and it sits a few inches away from the face so there's plenty of room for breath and belting out notes. She says it allows for a full range of motion and it's supposed to have a snug fit on the nose and under the chin.
The masks have been tested by WVU's Center for Inhalation Toxicology using the "Fit Test, which measures the ability of a mask to stop small (aerosol) particles from entering."
They found that the Sing-Safe performer’s mask can block small aerosol particles just like other masks. The mask was rate with a fit factor of 4, which means that for every four small particles outside the mask, only one particle gets inside. The study said a "surgical mask, worn without any add-on braces, would likely have a fit factor of 1, meaning that there would be an equal number of small aerosol particles inside and outside the mask (no filtration)."
So there's the science behind it. As a singer, would you be into it? I'm curious about how the voices would sound, whether the masks would create an overall muffled chorus or if the vocals would come through crystal clear. But if masks are going to be part of life for a while, this may be a say for singers to move forward. And something tells me non-singers looking for the extra mouth and nose space may be investing in these too.
The masks will soon be available for purchase at sing-safe.com and they're $30 each.