COVID-19: Essential Information

Department of Music and Pandemic Response

Department of Music Priorities in the COVID-19/Pandemic Era: Health and Safety First!

What does it mean to be a musician at Middlebury in the COVID-19 era?

  • Health and safety is a priority, and we will strictly enforce health and safety protocol.

  • Fairness to students and faculty who engage remotely is essential, and addressing the challenges of remote teaching and learning is a high priority.

  • Flexibility is important and necessary: we may not be able to meet some previous expectations (such as course enrollments), but we can work to find solutions that allow students and faculty to pursue the highest level of learning and engagement possible. Students should contact faculty to explore potential solutions to problems with courses.

  • Communication is critical, and the Department of Music will provide information about essentially how things will work when the college must react to a pandemic situation. We encourage you to reach out to us with concerns that you have about your musical studies!

  • As needed, we will implement a health and safety plan that includes, for example, distancing requirements specific to musicians that go beyond federal, state and local guidelines but follow months of research by a global consortium of musicians and scientists. Due to greater volume of air produced by some instruments, including voice/singing, music events often require greater distancing than classroom guidelines, for example.

Present Guidance

  • masks are required
  • distance of at least three feet
  • limit time in a small room (practice studio) to 45 minutes
  • please see updated room capacity posted on each room (if applicable)

Should the College need to shift to fully remote learning, we are prepared to continue all of our courses online. Ensemble work will vary. Many elements of music teaching and learning can be highly effective in a remote learning mode, but we also understand that remote learning can present other kinds of challenges to study and learning. We intend to be flexible if fully remote learning becomes a reality for courses that are not already designed that way.

Faculty Teaching Modes

For Ensembles and Music Lessons, please see sidebar links.

For individual faculty office hours and contact modes, please see the Faculty sidebar link.

What does it mean to be a musician at Middlebury during a pandemic?

We need to accept safety as our first consideration in any musical activity, and contribute to the community by observing college and department safety protocols. We do not need to completely abandon music: we can find every aspect of music to pursue within the current environment of health and safety, we can innovate in the current circumstances, and prepare for the next level of possibilities as knowledge and safety progress. Different instruments, disciplines, courses have different requirements, and in some cases, vastly different limitations. We will all need to accept when and where our personal musical activity may not be possible for a given period of time. We will need to be creative, supportive, and collaborative towards celebrating all music that can happen during this time, and explore the possibilities for making and sharing music given the resources that we have.

A Community Code Statement for the Department of Music at Middlebury

Beyond college health and safety measures, as participants in music ensembles, classes, and individual music practice sharing space on campus we need to conduct ourselves in a manner that recognizes and respects the health of others, and at all times, including outside of class rehearsal. We must not participate in any situation that challenges the stated health and safety protocol here and by the college, and we must distance ourselves to an extreme extent from any person or any situation that disrespects health and safety on campus by neglecting those protocols.

Department of Music

Mahaney Center for the Arts
72 Porter Field Road
Middlebury College
Middlebury, VT 05753