The Clovis High School and Freshman Academy marching bands will not compete, participate in band camps, or other band related activities in the fall of 2020. The cancellation is due to the environment brought about by COVID-19, which presents unique challenges for the performing arts.
On Tuesday, July 7, 2020, parents and students of 9th through 12th grade marching band and color guard were informed of the decision to cancel the season. The announcement was made in a letter from the District Director of Music Education, Brandon Boerio (attached), which details challenges and concerns brought on by COVID-19.
Band activities traditionally begin in July, extend to the start of the school year in August, and continue through fall. This summer, however, those activities are not possible because of public health orders surrounding COVID-19 and the unique exposures presented by performing music.
Among reasons for the decision to cancel the season are the insurmountable challenges that exist in operating camps in a safe but meaningful way, travel restrictions, the recent cancellation of the annual Zia Marching Band Fiesta, and the anticipation that more competition events will be cancelled in the near future.
Though students will not have an opportunity to enjoy a traditional band season, they will continue to participate in alternative activities, receive instruction, and hone their music skills. Music Department staff are working to develop creative alternatives so students can experience music and perform for the community. Among other possibilities being explored are online performances.
As the circumstances surrounding COVID-19 change, the type of activities the marching band is able to participate in will be carefully considered, with possible modifications to programs going forward.
"Clovis Municipal Schools and the community have a long-standing history of supporting music education. Likewise, the Clovis High School Marching Band is a highly regarded competition band which consistently garners many of the highest awards and accolades each year.
"The decision to cancel the season is understandably disappointing for students, parents, staff, and the community, and not taken lightly. It is, however, a necessary decision that has been made to protect the health and well-being of all involved in the marching band," the district said in a statement.