The first musical performance of the school year is an exciting milestone for beginning band students because they can showcase their budding musical talents to their family and friends.
But how is this possible for the 2020-2021 school year when the country is in the middle of a pandemic? A large gathering for a musical performance is definitely out of the question.
The Music Achievement Council (MAC) has the solution — go virtual! In October, MAC announced that this year's First Performance National Day of Celebration (FPNDOC) will be virtual. The official FPNDOC is Nov. 19, the third Thursday of November, but music directors can schedule their virtual concerts at any time — ideally within the first 8 to 12 weeks of school, according to MAC. With the virtual format, students’ family and friends from around the world can tune in to watch the performance.
MAC introduced the FPNDOC program three years ago because a key to retaining students in music programs is to get them performing as soon as possible and as often as possible. A complete set of materials called the “FPNDOC Toolkit” can help you plan your virtual concert.
MAC thanks Hal Leonard for providing select music from “Essential Elements for Band, Book 1” for the virtual FPNDOC concert.
The FPNDOC virtual concert brought in major players from the music industry to replicate a live concert experience for students. Joe Lamond, president and CEO of National Association of Music Merchants, provided the opening remarks at the concert. Marcia Neel, Senior Director of Education at Yamaha Corporation of America, was the emcee. Dr. Charles Menghini, president emeritus of VanderCook College of Music, served as conductor.
It is possible to cheer on beginning music students as they discover the joy of performing in the middle of a pandemic. Let’s celebrate together, virtually.