Our school’s traditional holiday celebrations were anything but traditional due to the pandemic. On top of all the other COVID concerns and considerations, just a week before the holiday break, the high school made the decision to go all virtual till after the break. Even without this sudden change, almost half of the students would have been virtual for the last day of school before break due to the hybrid schedule, making it difficult to plan any in person holiday events.
Although social distancing requirements and virtual learning made in person music concerts near impossible. The high school band and chorus were able to pull off a virtual concert where students recorded their parts of the performance and the pieces were stitched together. The orchestra had been planning to record a video in-person for each cohort but because of the 14-day quarantine in early December, there was not enough time to throw anything together. Some of the language clubs and the freshman class created caroling videos of club members singing holiday songs and sent them to nursing homes.
“Someday when we are in person again, we may still try. It takes a lot of time to coordinate,” said orchestra teacher, Dr. Zanky.
“Recording the video was honestly a little impersonal at first. Each of our parts was recorded separately but then once we saw it all together, it brought a sort of sense of hope and a reminder that this nightmare will eventually end and we can make music together again,” said freshman chorus student Ava Pursel.
In a normal, non-Covid year, non-denominational caroling at the front entrance would be led by English teacher, Ms. Kiessling. However, due to the quarantine, caroling was not possible.
With a new principal and vice-principal, they were focused on keeping our community and school safe, so any holiday events from past years was moved to a virtual layout such as the virtual concerts, and clubs caroling virtually.
“I am hopeful that next year each of these ensembles can perform in December and we can again have our Holiday assembly and performance on the last day of school before break,” said Vice Principal Antonelli.