Harmonizing our Music Program through the Pandemic

Courtesy of Bibi Darwish

Courtesy of Bibi Darwish

Bibi Diwa Darwish, News Editor

Since mid-March 2020, the pandemic has affected nearly every aspect of our lives, from work and school to everyday activities like playing sports and music performancesStudents went from learning in classrooms to learning from home. Music students went from performing live to virtual performance. Covid-19 has changed our music program from having fun music to an online world. As our West High Music teacher Jonathan Raman says, “Before COVID-19, our music program had a lot of performances during the year, a lot of traveling, on school performances and out of school performances. Fifty different performances would happen during the year on or off-campus. Some groups like the Marching Band would go to four to five competitions at the being of the year. At the same time, our orchestra band would perform for middle school kids and travel to the Stanislaus, Delta College, Sonoma State and different universities. Covid-19 happened, and everything shut down from competitions to festivals and no travel, some kids who wanted to be in music program decided not to join. We lost a lot of our students, and it kind of hit our music program.”  

Still, in the light of the Covid-19 outbreak, our students and teachers are doing their best to provide a better Music club to help students stay motivated and make the best high school music experience for music lovers and athletes. Senior Aria Jacinto said, “There is definitely a big difference because our whole class was based on being able to play our instruments. It was impossible to do that online and we shifted from playing to learning a lot about theory, having more class discussion. Most of our grading was based on writing assignments and recording assignments.”   

 Although a lot has changed, still this pandemic gives us a lot of opportunities to try new things in life; it taught us how to deal with problems and see the bright side of life. Raman adds, “Recently some of these programs out there decided to accept virtual performances, so kids can record themselves and submit their recording and then they can get critiqued and judged by professors for colleges.”   

Music is playing a big role in our life, as it is a way to express our feelings and emotions. For some people, music is considered a way to escape from the pain of life. It gives us relief and allows us to reduce stress.