Bearcat Bands Coronavirus Response Plans

Abstract 7/23/2020

The UC Bearcat Bands return-to-campus (RTC) plans are designed to permit students opportunities to participate in live collaborative music-making with a minimization of risk. The fear of not being able to do this is the primary concern expressed by band members.

Observance of all CDC guidelines is applicable. It is helpful to note studies indicate wind instrument performer aerosols generally condense inside of the instrument with a modest amount actually escaping the instrument at a radius of approximately 2.6 feet around the artist’s head. Exceptions to this include 1) the flute/piccolo and 2) brass instrument bells. Solutions include the use of plexiglass apparatus specifically designed to capture flute/piccolo player aerosols and the covering of brass instrument bells with double-layered 80 denier fabric. Based on current research, it can be said with a reasonable degree of certainty the performance of a wind instrument is no more of a spreader of aerosols than standing and loudly speaking or performing light exercise and loudly speaking while wearing a mask and social distancing (referencing reasonable comparisons to the quanta/hr. scale developed by Buonanno et al. 2020a, b).

In brief, staggered retrieval of equipment, outdoor rehearsals at 6+ feet performer intervals, and cleaning and disinfecting of all equipment at the rehearsal’s conclusion are necessary and intended according to the ongoing plans being developed for Bearcat Bands operations. Plans will evolve as necessary.

In recognition of the Bearcat Bands Centennial in 2020-21, an initiative to hold “100 performances for 100 years” is planned. This will involve students in duos, trios, and the like preparing music indoors that will be recorded and shared virtually to engage the UC community. Additionally, standstill rehearsal and performance of full ensemble music outdoors is also intended. Movement to music will be incorporated as it becomes known to what degree movement can be done with a minimal amount of risk.

Details about the Bearcat Bands RTC plans can be found by clicking here with supporting documentation available by clicking here and accessing the Coronavirus Resources folder.

Click here to view the results of a joint study by the University of Cincinnati Education and Research Center / College of Medicine / College-Conservatory of Music titled Characterization of Aerosols from Musical Performance & Risk Mitigation Related to COVID 19 Pandemic.

[Link is to YouTube.]