Major Key Setback

Band pushes forward with season amidst COVID-19

Band+members+practice+for+their+season+while+maintaining+Coronavirus+regulations.

Katie McClellan

Band members practice for their season while maintaining Coronavirus regulations.

Kate Denning, Staff Reporter

As students begin their journeys back into classrooms, many have already grown accustomed to the regulations. From July to the present, band has been working hard to keep “in shape” for the upcoming–and definitely different–season.

When quarantine was enforced in late March, many band members were unsure of what would become of their upcoming year. With band’s population being over 300 students, it seemed to many who wanted a regular season that enforcing social distancing and other rules would be difficult. However, the directors came up with ways to make practicing and rehearsing routines a little easier for members while still staying true to Coronavirus restrictions.

“I honestly had no idea how band would work at the start of COVID-19,” freshman Neva Rognes said. “But our band directors have been restructuring it since to adapt to the new situation.”

Starting late in the summer, the directors began to conduct mandatory summer band webinars with blocked interactive schedules. There were set time periods for choreo, body movement and learning basic marching techniques. 

“I thought the season would be completely cancelled,” junior Zach Iacobucci said. “Band is close quarters marching partnered with air instruments so I didn’t think it would be possible to have a season.”

In regards to the upcoming season, band rehearsals have slowly been easing off of Zoom webinars and have begun to conduct in-person practicing. Two weeks ago, percussion was the first group to begin these safe rehearsals, and freshmen are next in line to show their skills to directors.

“The directors are hosting after school rehearsals for those who are comfortable with in person practice,” Iacobucci said. “I believe the rehearsals are okay as long as they stay on top of COVID and don’t get lazy or behind.”

How band will proceed with shows and performances has also been an area of concern for members and directors alike. Many band members said that performing was one of their favorite parts of being in band, and that they hoped they’d be able to have a season.

“When we heard [about the lockdown], I assumed we would go back in a month or two so the season would still go on but that did not happen,” sophomore Suruchi Vu said. “As we got closer to May, June and July I was worried that we wouldn’t have a marching show, especially since it’s something I truly enjoyed last year.”

The directors have come up with a safe way to do shows, as they did with rehearsals. The band members will be required to wear masks when they are not performing and social distancing will be enforced throughout performances.

“The band will be going to home football games and some away games and I’m really excited because I have been looking forward to football games all summer,” junior Tori Jones said. “I am excited to perform but it will definitely be different.”

While many things are still unknown in regards to the rest of the school year, many band members have said that they have found some solace in the fact that they will at least get to enjoy some of the things that make band so special.

“I was scared that the season was going to be all work and none of the reward,” Jones said. “But once I heard the marching band play together for the first time since [last] November, I got chills and knew that even without competitions, the season would still be enjoyable.”