Anytime you need a friend: global message of solidarity from NHS choir


Members of Breathe Harmony, our Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS staff choir, have created an international recording of Mariah Carey’s ‘Anytime You Need a Friend’ in partnership with Musical Director Mike King and MyCool Music Foundation, bringing singers together to show their appreciation for the NHS amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

The project has attracted over 100 musicians and singers from across the world with participants from the UK, USA, Barbados, Canada, Italy, Spain, Poland, South Africa, Australia, France, Belgium and Greece. These individuals have joined together through weekly virtual rehearsals, submitting individual home recordings on their mobile phones, to create a global message of solidarity. Produced by Musical Director Mike King who has worked with some of the most famous musical artists in the world, including Mark Ronson, Florence and the Machine and Boy George. Following the second #ClapForOurCarers initiative, the final track and music video is released.

Following completion of the project, Guy’s and St Thomas’ Advanced Nurse Practitioner and Breathe Harmony member, Stella Gay, said: “In such a horrible time, this was an escape and a time to be me again. To be able to forget everything, even for a few minutes, with people who understand what we are facing. It recharges your batteries and reminds me that I’m not alone.”

Breathe Harmony was established by Breathe Arts Health Research in 2017 to give Guy’s and St Thomas’ staff a creative outlet to help combat stress, promote health and wellbeing through singing and to create a sense of community amongst NHS colleagues. Head of Programmes, Hannah Dye said: “During this particularly challenging time, it’s more important than ever to be uplifted through the spirit of singing and to offer our NHS workers alongside many more, a chance to creatively connect with a supportive community.”

Mike King said, “Singing is not only fantastic for physical and mental health and wellbeing but it brings people together. At a time when people have never felt so isolated and alone, when hope is in short supply, I wanted to create an opportunity for people around the world to connect and have something positive to focus on. However, this wasn’t only meant to benefit those who took part in the experience but for the song itself to bring hope and comfort to those effected by the coronavirus and show our appreciation to the NHS and all those working on the front line.”

To donate to Breathe Arts Health Research, MyCool Music Foundation and our partners click HERE.

Download this press release with note to editors HERE.