A New Stage

The PCA Band Adapts to COVID-19 With Rigorous Sanitization


Yearbook Staff

Hayden Taylor (10) gets ready to march to beat of his trumpet.

As the seasons change, so does the direction of the PCA Band program. Usually, the band competes in various competitions as a group and individually. This year, however, COVID-19 has changed how the Band is run and how events and practices are conducted.

Keeping a sanitized and safe environment for students to practice in is of utmost importance, and Band Directors Mr. Eddie Jimenez and Mrs. Tami Thornton are doing an outstanding job keeping Band students safe without compromise. After each class held in the Band Hall, all commonly touched surfaces such as music stands and chairs are disinfected. Additionally, there is hand sanitizer available in common areas.

Another hurdle that the Band had to overcome was playing their instruments. When you blow into a wind instrument, some of your breath goes into the air. Mr. Jimenez and Mrs. Thornton have thought of ways to limit breath aerosols by having students play with fabric covers over the bells of the instruments. For instruments with spit valves, absorbent material is used to collect the spit for disposal. Students are spaced out as much as possible, the large double doors to the outside courtyard are open during practice for better ventilation, and an air purification system is used in the Band Hall. Currently, the Upper School Band is hard at work preparing for Solo and Ensemble Contest and sight-reading and auditioning for TPSMEA All-Region Honor Band. Unfortunately, some events are not able to take place. “All-State has been canceled, although five students made the All-State Band. Solo and Ensemble Contest as well as sight-reading will be done via recording,” said Mr. Jimenez.

The PCA Band program has stayed vastly unchanged in process due to very professional sanitization and an enthusiastic mindset. While some events may not be the magnitude they usually are, or are canceled, students and instructors alike are making the best of it and are happy they get to play at all. The spring semester will be a dynamic but enjoyable experience for the band members, and the best is wished for them in their competitions.