PV Music Department to host first virtual Holiday Concert

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the PV Music Department's 2020 Winter Concert will be held virtually. It will take place on Dec. 17 at 7 p.m. and be available for viewing free of charge.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the PV Music Department’s 2020 Winter Concert will be held virtually. It will take place on Dec. 17 at 7 p.m. and be available for viewing free of charge.

Spencer Goldstein and Ellie Kim

Pascack Valley’s Music Department will be hosting its first virtual Holiday Concert on Thursday, Dec. 17 at 7 p.m. It will be available via a YouTube premiere link, which can be found on the Music Department’s homepage. Viewing the concert will be free of charge.

The PV Music Department included a promotional flyer for its upcoming Holiday Concert in its email sent out to the PV community on Dec. 15. The flyer includes information about the concert, as well as a photo of each student participant. (Courtesy of the PV Music Department)

Not only is the band unable to perform in front of a live audience due to COVID-19 restrictions, but members were not allowed to congregate in one place in order to record their parts. These circumstances have served as unprecedented obstacles when it comes to producing the concert.

“On Google Meet, we cannot really have our sounds on because when everybody is singing or playing at the same time, we can’t really hear each other because of the time delay so we have to do it all on mute,” PV Choir teacher Argine Safari said. “That is the biggest challenge that we have to deal with, [as well as] students having to record themselves [individually as] we could not really even record in-person at school.”

It’s not only the concert preparation that is heavily impacted by the virtual aspect, as the performance itself will have a “totally different feeling.” 

“Performing live on stage cannot be replaced by any virtual experience,” Safari said.

The concert’s virtual setting presents an entirely different atmosphere for all band students, yet none were impacted more than the seniors.

“Ever since I was a freshman, I always looked forward to being a senior doing the Winter Concert because we always have one song where we invite all the alumni and it’s a choir tradition to sing it together,” senior and choir member TJ Ballesteros said. “But this year we can’t do that and have a concert [where we] gather all past students to sing with us.”

Though the concert will not contain the collaborative alumni song, it will feature all of the Music Department’s performing ensembles, “as well as numerous small instrumental and vocal groups,” according to an email sent by Safari.

Safari noted that there is a possibility of the Music Department hosting more virtual concerts in the future; however, she hopes that recordings could be done in-person as opposed to all members recording their tracks separately before combining them to “make it sound like everyone was singing together at the same time.”

“We are just happy that we can bring something to our communities and bring some holiday spirit into their homes,” Safari said. “This is obviously not the way we imagined our concert, but we’re excited to still share our music and share what we’ve been doing.”