Returning to Group Playing, What’s your Band doing?

2nd tenor

Well-Known Member
That seems a well-balanced viewpoint, 2T. Compassion and optimism are what will see us through in mental health good enough to look the facts in the face without flinching.
Thank you for you kind comments. ‘Facing the facts without flinching’ and ‘grasping the nettle’ is no doubt the right way forward, the way to go. However, I’m also sure that many of us feel so worn and bruised by the last year that such an approach feels beyond what we can support - or rather we can no longer envisage ourself being able to support such an effort. I guess that it’s now a case of one small step in front of another, towards the ‘pin prick’ of light at the end of the tunnel - I doubt that I’ll be the only one limping over the finishing line.

I listened to our PM this afternoon, as he addressed Parliament.

Provided I heard and understood correctly, and provided things go to plan, we should nationally be out of lockdown measures by the end of June.

If I was a Fete organiser than I might just be cautious about rushing out to make plans but, at the moment, restarting indoor rehearsals in July doesn’t seem to be too optimistic and outdoor rehearsals might be allowable from late May. At last, something to look forward to.
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2nd tenor

Well-Known Member
Late March 2021.
I’m wondering what other groups are doing now and what they plan to do? My own Band has some provisional bookings, we’re supportive on-line and many of us have been vaccinated; so we’re pushing towards that light at the end of the tunnel.


Well-Known Member
Some bookings are trickling in; others are trickling out. Park jobs are touting for summer business, but it isn't clear how possible they'll be - some contracts this year have acquired a no-fault organiser cancellation clause for obvious reasons. The "Kidlington 800" community concert we were originally booked for in October 2020 has now been postponed further from October 2021 to October 2022.

There doesn't seem a clear overall picture. Maybe we'll be able to return to small and distanced rehearsals in May. Much depends on 1) vaccination progress (not just UK but worldwide and in particular in nearby countries); 2) spread of new variants; 3) whether the third wave rising in nearby countries at the moment is allowed by lax travel regulation to spread to here also.


Active Member
In Scotland, the plan is to get to "Level 0" by July. Level 0 does not permit choirs or brass bands to meet, even outdoors or in small groups. I find this particularly frustrating as I on weekly testing for Covid and have had both vaccinations. I am pretty much a zero risk in either direction. I hope the rules will change as we get closer to the summer. The pressure for choirs to restart will be helpful to us. From sounding out people in amateur orchestras it won't be possible to have orchestral rehearsals with 2m distancing. There just aren't venues big enough. The Covid situation has also solidified viola/woodwind existing positions on hearing loss and needing screens or no brass present. Brass bands are the best chance for brass players getting to play but its the choir lobby that will make it happen.

Going forward, my prediction is that brass instruments will be seen as generally unsanitary. Most amateur orchestras will not have regular brass sections for the foreseeable future. I am certainly not going to play behind screens. Not without monitors anyway, as it's far too difficult to hear what's going on. We have to have reasonable risk assessments. At the moment we are applying measures that are not even required in work situations.

[Just to back up what I am projecting as a possible outcome, I saw photos of a professional symphony orchestra doing a recording. The Strings and woodwind were in the hall 2m distanced. The brass were in a different room. That could have been due to space, but I think it's significant that the woodwind were in with the strings. Strictly come dancing was the same I think. The saxes were live, the trumpets and trombones were prerecorded.]