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BHS holds modified band camp at the House of Orange
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BHS holds modified band camp at the House of Orange

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Concerts were canceled this spring for the Beatrice High School bands due to COVID-19, and the details for future performances and competitions are still undecided, but the students marched on this week to hold band camp at the House of Orange.

The camp was held entirely outside this year, as well as in shorter increments, with students social distancing in their different ensembles across the field. Students practiced their form and marching, as well as performed different pieces of their show and, of course, laughed and joked with each other in their downtime.

Band instructor Andrew Johnson said it’s nice to have the students play together again after four months, and reminded them that following health and safety guidelines is what will allow them to keep performing.

“I’m really pleased with their attitude so far,” Johnson said. “They come in and are working hard.”

Senior Hannah Essink, a piccolo player for the band, said the camp feels a lot different since having to social distance, but said it was nice to have it to bring some normalcy back to students’ lives.

The marching band’s show this year involves three songs by Bruno Mars: “Runaway Baby," “Natalie” and “Uptown Funk." Johnson noted that it’s a deviation from previous years’ themes, which focus on telling a story, and said the main goal this year is to have fun.

“We changed it in part because I didn’t want to get to the point where ‘ok, we learned our entire show’ and then everything’s canceled and we don’t get to do a full performance,” Johnson said.

“The music was really good, and I’m actually kind of glad that we weren’t doing it this year because of this COVID stuff,” sophomore Brianna Brewer, a trombone player for the band, said. “Save it for a year when we actually have competitions, and we actually get to show off a really nice show.”

Brewer said that when playing indoors, the band has been told to stand six feet apart from each other.

Johnson said he doubts the entire band will perform together indoors unless it’s in one of the gyms. He said some district contests have also been preemptively canceled.

“As of now, our plan is to be at football games if that’s allowed. We’ll probably sit somewhere different, further away from people…I anticipate we’ll get some virtual sort of contest where we can record our show here by ourselves and send it off. That’s a way we can still get feedback from other people without having to be around closely to a whole lot of other people.”

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