With many activities returning to normal, Jazz Band has begun to resume practices outside. Although some jazz instruments need breath to produce noise, school musicians have been able to safely gather and practice weekly with proper precautions to protect themselves from COVID-19.
The main change is that all players wear a bell covering their instruments. This acts as a mask for the instrument to reduce the risk of spit and other particles spraying from instruments.
“It doesn’t make too much difference to the sound of the instrument,” Fifth Former Mitav Nayak said.
Another change are the masks that the players are using.
“Each mask has a flap that allows players to play their instruments while keeping their nose and mouth relatively covered,” Nayak said. “With all of the precautions, there is very little risk of the virus spreading.”
“I think it’s pretty safe,” said. “We are following all the guidelines we can.”
“A lot of jazz is listening, and that is incredibly hard to do virtually.”Mitav Nayak ’22
These outdoor rehearsals have been helpful because musicians can finally hear how they sound as a group—a quality essential for jazz, as it requires all players to listen to each other to stay on time and make harmonious music.
“The plan is to record multiple songs as our ‘concert,’” Nayak said.
For the winter concert, Jazz Band members recorded their parts individually and sent them to Mr. Hengst to be mixed. “The winter recording was good, but this will be much better,” Nayak stated, “A lot of jazz is listening and that is incredibly hard to do virtually. This is as close to a live performance as we are going to get this year.”
Director Mr. Philip Giangiordano is working hard with the Jazz Band to produce some quality jazz. If you want to have a listen, look for them in the amphitheater or listen to their recordings in the Spring “Concert.”