NATS Zoom Round Table, October 23, 2020

A report by EVTA Secretary-Elect Eleanor Forbes


There were 34 attendees from 14 countries around the world, including India, Indonesia and Brazil.


NATS former president Karen Brunssen gave a short presentation about the NATS trip to Germany last year. She stressed how fruitful the networking and exchange of ideas with participants from EVTA and BDG had been.


PEVOC in Estonia has been postponed to 23-27 August, 2022, but they are planning a one-day webinar for August 2021. ICVT in Vienna can hopefully take place in 2022. Marvin Keenze talked about the planning – the deadline for proposals for ICVT sessions has been extended so that applications can still be submitted.


NATS is planning a webinar on looking after ourselves and our students, as well as mental health resources for teachers and students. They have also now launched a survey of singing teachers who have had Covid-19.


The webinar’s discussion topic was “How are your organizations coping with restrictions and trying to plan?” Here are some of the replies:

  • EVTA – some associations are growing as a result of the pandemic as teachers seek support and information, some others are struggling. Zoom exchanges are planned.
  • India – all schools are closed, but connections with international teachers have opened up online (“the silver lining in the dark clouds”). There is no teachers association but interest in NATS affiliation was mentioned.
  • Brazil – only online teaching
  • Switzerland – their annual meeting is in January, but they had to cancel one of the main speakers, Germany’s Barbara Hoos de Jokisch, due to travel restrictions.
  • The South African attendee encouraged participation in online competitions
  • Allen Henderson from NATS has visited Hong Kong and Singapore to work with interested teachers and make connections.
  • The Belgian participant voiced her concern at the rise in online lessons and courses offered by untrained singers. A lively discussion of pros and cons and possible strategies to educate singers about the benefits of association membership followed.