Canada karaoke bar lets customers sing in the shower during pandemic

HAMILTON, Ontario (Reuters) - A Canadian karaoke bar is letting its customers sing in the shower during the pandemic - to keep people safe, they’ve constructed a shower stall, complete with curtains and tubular piping, on stage.

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Tracie’s Place Karaoke Bar and Restaurant in Hamilton, Ontario, 70 km south of Toronto, closed during the COVID-19 pandemic in March. It reopened three months ago amid strict protocols set out by the government for how they could operate.

The province of Ontario ordered most businesses to close in March, reopening in stages beginning in June. Karaoke bars were among the last businesses permitted to reopen, due to the possibility of spreading the virus through droplets while singing.

Owner Tracie England’s solution? Installing a cubicle made of clear plastic shower curtains on stage.

“Doing it in the shower is a great way to stay sanitized and keep everything clean,” she said.

Normally she has to rush people along because there is such high demand to get behind the mic. Now she plays a song between each singer, giving her a chance to clean down the shower stall. Shower curtains also separate the tables.

“Everything’s been fabulous so far,” England said.

The change appears to be going over well with customers so far. On a recent Friday night, Tracie’s Place was at capacity.

“It’s a fun little quirk that’s added to the place,” said patron Michaela Hallok, 21. “(England) cares so much about the people that come to this bar that she wouldn’t risk putting anyone in danger.”

Ontario, along with much of Canada, has seen cases spiking in recent weeks. The province reported 566 new cases of COVID-19 on Sunday, according to the provincial government.

Reporting by Carlos Osorio in Hamilton; Writing by Moira Warburton in Vancouver; Editing by Daniel Wallis