Last spring I was unable to have my spring recital. The church I regularly rent had closed as had almost all churches across the country. Many of my colleagues chose to have Zoom recitals. Due to a family emergency I was unable to summon the time and energy required to do the necessary preparation work to offer that possibility. My students seemed none the worse for wear since fortunately we had already had two rectials both in the fall and in the winter.
This fall I vowed to do better on the background work necessary to be certain my students have all the opportunities I have always offered. my first step was to call my beloved church and ask what the situation was for the fall. I was not surprised when they told me they were still up in the air as to when and if they will allow groups back in. Determined not to be locked out again I set my deadline for September 1st. If they still cannot commit to a date in October when I can offer a socially distanced recital experience for my students then Zoom recital here we come! So far I’ve set up an account but I still ahve to learn how to set up a meeting that lasts more than one hour.
One way I plan to get rid of the kinks is to offer one of my group classes on Zoom right in September so that we can fulfill that commitment while also making it a practice run for a larger recital experience. One of my students asked me if they should get all dressed up for the recital. I plan to suggest they wear their recital attire so they can get in the spirit of the performance and not get so casual that it loses some of its value. Given that all online lessons were done on Skype and Face Time I’m one social media platform away from becoming fully versed in the intricacies of the online world!
Once again, planning now in August is so very important. As soon as the school year gets in full swing it can become daunting to do additional planning and research into all the facets of offering new venues and platforms. Plan away, perhaps try for a creative theme for your first recital this year just to spruce up the program and create something new that students can look forward to during this time of so many other limitations!