Virtual Tour Fall 2020

Thoughts and reflections on giving a virtual tour during COVID-19.

In this blog entry, I hope to reflect on this tour, the colleagues worked with, the students listened to, and most of all- how all of this really worked out. Are we really connecting with students? Are we really able to express our art online, without being at a school in person?

In Preparation:

The back story to the tour. In the fall of 2019, I contacted Dr. Michael Smith, to see if he would like to collaborate on a series of recitals in south louisiana. 4 schools, about 45 minutes of music, mostly duets that we had played before and could throw together quickly.

The project was added on to later, but at the time, we kept it simple. We added a few schools in the upper midwest, that I could travel up the next fall and perform the same material. Then as our first recital date approached on March 20, 2020- all schools shut down in Louisiana. At the time, Iowa, where Dr. Smith teaches, was still having school. We had to scramble to shut down the recitals, not thinking about what to do next. A month or two later, I reached out to all the schools we had set up for the spring and fall, asking if we could reschedule for the fall. At the time, I had hopes that school would be back in and I might actually feel like traveling again... but not so much. So, slowly, over the summer we converted our idea into a virtual tour.

In mid July,  I found myself visiting family in Iowa. I took all my horns, dress clothes (although I did forget both a belt and jacket...), and music by car to the Luther College campus in Decorah, IA. There Dr. Smith and I recorded everything we need for the recital in a short 4 hour recording session. Mick Layden was the camera operator and sound tech, he did a great job! Having managed to complete the recording, we just needed to set up the tour!