Band concerts return for the first time in over a year

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Charlotte Blasiol

Mia Buntin (right) and Emily Kim, (left) doing their beginning of class warm ups.

Charlotte Blasiol, Writer

Concert and symphonic bands on Oct. 26 performed the first RCMS concert since March 2020. 

Mrs. Tiffany Hitz, one of the band directors at RCMS, is grateful that band can be in-person this year and not virtual like last year. 

“Students are getting to blend their sounds together again,” she said.

Mia Buntin (right) and Emily Kim, (left) doing their beginning of
class warm ups.
(Charlotte Blasiol)

She is happy the bands can now reinforce skills they couldn’t last year. 

Mr. Chris DiMassimo, the other band director, thought the Concert band played the song “Medallion Overture” best, and the Symphonic band played “Midnight Sky” best.

“They worked really hard,” he said.

Mrs. Hitz said that they chose these songs, along with others, because they gave big parts to every instrument. The percussionists had parts where even they played alone.

Another reason they chose the songs they did was because of the few slow songs. Mrs. Hitz said slow songs are harder than you think to play and require a lot of skill, because most people tend to play faster than slower.

According to Mr. DiMassimo, nearly 80 band members performed and each could bring a maximum of four family members to watch them in the gym. About 240 people attended the concert, but the bleachers were spaced out to prevent the spread of Covid-19. 

Mrs. Hitz was proud of both bands.  “They played and behaved well,” she said. 

Both Mrs. Hitz and Mr. DiMassimo agreed that both bands were properly prepared for the concert. Neither were nervous for the first concert. 

“I was more excited than nervous,” Mrs. Hitz said. 

In many ways, the bands have had to change due to the pandemic. For example, all wind instruments have to be equipped with a bell cover, or students have to wear a musician mask. If neither of these are possible, students must remove their mask to play and replace it when they are done. 

“So much of band is visual,” Mrs. Hitz said, explaining how masks affect the overall feeling of band during the pandemic. 

In addition to masks and bell covers, band enrollment has been down due to Covid-19.

Coming out of Covid-19, though, Mr. DiMassimo described this band year as action-packed. He said that many band members have been switching instruments. He said this is good, because it gives the bands a new sound, but is very crazy with everyone trying new instruments. 

When asked if Mrs. Hitz was excited for the next concert, she answered, “You bet!”