Just over three weeks ago, Pérez Hall fell silent and university music training across the globe became virtual. Overnight, we found ourselves working remotely from home and facing the formidable challenge of doing all teaching and administrative tasks online.
Without a doubt, the COVID-19 health crisis has led to profound changes in the way society interacts and to the way services are provided. The delivery of education is no exception. Around the world, our colleagues are facing comparable challenges, and we are all sharing solutions for online teaching methods and performance instruction tools.
Despite the cancellation of all ensemble concerts, student recitals, and other events, applied music instruction is still thriving as our professors continue to engage with their students and teach using online methods. Even solfège is being taught by distance learning. Auditions for the 2020-2021 academic year are also proceeding, now solely in video format.
Our graduate students continue to work remotely on thesis research, to create new works for composition portfolios, and to prepare materials for recital defences. We will profile some of this work on our website in the coming weeks. We are also looking into ways to feature online presentations as our students continue to perform.
So the music will play on and we will fulfill our two priorities – to close out the year successfully and to recruit our next incoming class of talented musicians, scholars, composers, researchers, and teachers.
From my desk at home, I wish everyone well and thank all of my colleagues and our students for rising to this challenge in remarkable ways.
– Lori Burns