Coronavirus: Singing Italians in lockdown boost neighbourhood spirits

Italians are cooped up at home by a government decree to combat the spread of coronavirus. They are coping creatively.

A trumpeter on a balcony in Sicily blasts out “Imagine.” At the same precise moment, a saxophonist plays some jazz riffs through an open apartment window in northern Turin. Pot lids are clanged like cymbals by homemakers in aprons in Rome and Naples — all at the stroke of 6pm.

In Milan, an opera singer leans out her window and sends notes wafting through the early evening air. Elsewhere in the city, which is Italy’s financial hub in a region that has the most coronavirus cases and deaths in the country, people strum guitars on perches overlooking the Navigli, a neighbourhood that normally bubbles with nightlife.

And everywhere it seems, from north to south, windowsills and terraces are draped with Italian flags in a country which rarely displays them in any great numbers except during the World Cup every four years.

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