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Cole Porter Gets A COVID-19 Rewrite

Staff | March 23rd, 2020

Cole Porter Gets A COVID-19 Rewrite

Hamden  |  Music  |  Arts & Culture  |  COVID-19  |  Yale School of Music

Connecticut hasn't officially ordered residents to shelter in place yet. But a professor from the Yale School of Music isn't planning to wait until it does.

Monday afternoon, Yale Professor Jeffrey Douma and his family issued that plea from their Hamden living room, as they reimagined Cole Porter's "Anything Goes" for a one-minute, mellifluous reminder to "Stay In Your Home." It comes among mounting COVID-19 cases in New Haven, including a 10-year-old child, and the first confirmed case in Hamden.

Douma is a professor of choral conducting at the Yale School of Music, where operations have moved entirely online and performances have been cancelled for the remainder of the academic year. His daughter, Fi Schroth-Douma, is a freshman at Yale and member of the Yale Schola Cantorum. As the Yale School of Music pointed out, it's a fun meeting of worlds: Porter was president of the Yale Glee Club over a century ago. Douma is now the director. 

The video is perhaps the most jovial public health reminder that New Haven and Hamden have seen so far. In just over a minute, the family reminds listeners to wash their hands, stop touching their faces, and remain at home if they are able to. It's not tone deaf either: instruments in hand, they acknowledge that some people can't stay home because they are essential workers, and others still have to use public transit

It also feels right on time. On Sunday, Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont recorded and delivered a message telling the state's residents to "stay safe, stay home" via the CTAlert System, which sends direct notifications to Connecticut cell phones. Then on Monday, he ordered a ban on "non-essential" businesses, issuing 11 exemptions on everything from healthcare to takeout and delivery (read about all of them here).

He has not yet officially ordered residents to shelter in place, although both he and New Haven Mayor Justin Elicker have said they are considering it. Hamden Mayor Curt Leng has urged residents to stay home whenever possible. 

The Yale School of Music has been posting concert recordings and a few short, virtual performances on its social media profiles. Check it out on Facebook and Twitter.