UMO Symphonic and Jazz band to hold free concert

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The University of Mount Olive Symphonic Band and Jazz Band will hold a concert Oct. 14 at 7 p.m. in the Hazel Waters Kornegay Assembly Hall.

The event is free and open to the public.

Due to COVID-19, band rehearsals have looked and sounded different during the past 18 months. Making music in the midst of a pandemic meant significant changes in the rehearsal hall.

Students wore masks until seated, had their chairs arranged six feet apart, dealt with large plastic shields between each other and an additional large shield attached to music stands. All were measures to create a safe practice environment.

Percussion students moved to a 20-foot platform below the stage rather than sitting behind the band.

“It is a long distance to view conducting moves and hear musical direction,” said director Bill Ford. “But we are determined to make it work.”

With countless rehearsals, the musicians have gotten used to the new sound dynamic which takes longer to bounce between percussion, woodwinds and brass.

“Being able to practice in-person has felt like the only normal in a time that hasn’t been normal for anyone,” Ford said.  

Ford is excited about showcasing the talents of his students during the upcoming concert. 

“I hope that you will join us and enjoy an evening of music performed by this dedicated group of musicians,” he said.

Hazel Waters Kornegay Assembly Hall is located at 207 Wooten St. in Mount Olive. For more information, contact Dr. Ford at wford@umo.edu.

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