Health and Science

Italians are singing songs from their windows to boost morale during coronavirus lockdown

Key Points
  • Italy is one of the worst affected countries by COVID-19.
  • It has 17,660 confirmed cases and 1,266 deaths, according to the latest data from Johns Hopkins University.
  • Schools, museums, universities and cinemas have been closed.
  • The shutdown is weighing heavily on Italy's economy.
A girl sings from the window during the flash mob, March 13, 2020. Some people have organized a flash mob asking to stand on the balcony and sing or play something, to make people feel united in the quarantine.
Mairo Cinquetti/NurPhoto via Getty Image

Videos have been shared on social media of Italian citizens singing and dancing during a nationwide lockdown amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The videos, from various cities and towns, show people singing from balconies and windows in an attempt to boost morale, with all non-essential shops and services still closed in the country.

Italy is one of the worst affected countries in the world by COVID-19, with 17,660 confirmed cases and 1,266 deaths, according to the latest data from Johns Hopkins University. That's the largest outbreak outside of China.

One widely shared video shows neighbors singing a patriotic folk song in Siena, a city in central Italy's Tuscany region.

A video from Naples shows people singing a song reportedly called "Abbracciame," which translates as "hug me."

Another from Naples, the regional capital of Campania, shows a woman smiling and dancing at her balcony.

In Sicily, neighbours are seen accompanied by a man playing the accordion. Twitter user John Nichols said in his tweet: "Sicily has figured out this whole self-isolation thing."

On Wednesday evening, Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte said that supermarkets and pharmacies would be the only retailers to remain open in Italy. The country is under a national lockdown restricting citizens' movement and activities until April 3.

Schools, museums, universities and cinemas have been closed while other public events, including Serie A soccer matches, have been canceled. Conte said Wednesday it was time to "go one step further," announcing the closure of most commercial and retail activities with bars, restaurants and beauty salons among those ordered to shut.

The shutdown is weighing heavily on Italy's economy and Italian blue-chip stocks plunged by over 23% this week.