GREENSBORO, N.C. — After months of being sidelined due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Greensboro Youth Symphony Orchestra will finally get to perform again.
They will hold three free performances on Sunday, November 22nd on stage at the new Steven Tanger Center for Performing Arts.
No one will be allowed in the audience, but the performances will be streamed on GYSO's YouTube channel. The third performance at 6 p.m. will be simulcast at LeBauer Park.
"The things that we are both excited and nervous for is that this is in some ways a new way of performing," Music director Dr. Evan Feldman said. "Like usually you perform and there is an audience there that you feed off of and vice versa. so it's going to be really exciting and also interesting to see how the students react to essentially playing for a vacuum. "
Youth Strings will perform from 2-2:15 p.m., Youth Philharmonic from 4-4:20 p.m., and the Youth Orchestra from 6-6:25 p.m.
The kids have had to overcome multiple challenges, from limited rehearsal time to adjusting to a new acoustic, to outside noise and weather. The orchestra's education director said it was hard finding a large enough space to practice outdoors in person.
"As opposed to let's say a marching band, orchestras are not usually outside and the instruments don't do well in the sun or exposed to elements. So it's challenging to find places at the outdoor is shaded or indoor is in a gymnasium style space where it's very large but it's really heated or cooled," Peter Zlotnick said.
The orchestra ended up finding two places to rehearse the Warwick Pavillion at YMCA Camp Weaver and the Summit Center at Haw River State Park.
All musicians are masked. Those who play wind instruments wear a special mask that allows them to put the instrument in their mouth. Then the bottom part of their instrument has a special covering to reduce the number of aerosols that go into the air.
Some students only participated remotely and won't play live Sunday. So at the end of the performance simulcast at LeBauer Park, an edited video will be shown with those kids playing their numbers.