Volume VII | July 12, 2020
July Newsletter

July is SO HOT... both in heat index and in Covid active cases. Facebook page is flooded with teachers consulting one another about how each other is coping, and it has been both educational and comforting to know that we are not alone in this constant struggle of how to handle the students in-person.

Due to uncertainties, calendar of events for 2020-2021 will be somewhat approximate and fluid this year. Some events are taking shape, and there are 3 announcements:

  1. MMAMTA annual membership is due; please renew. https://www.mtna.org/MTNA/JoinAndRenew/Membership/Active_Membership.aspx
  2. MMTA District and State auditions are both going to be online this year. However, they have not decide what platform to use (for example, Zoom live audition, or Youtube pre-recorded video audition). The MMTA is still working through many details including the fees and handling of auditions, so please be patient.
  3. Diane Hidy Fall Workshop is officially postponed to next year around the same time in August 2021.

About 10 years ago, we had a guest speaker Dr. Young Kim from Albany, NY visit for our Fall Workshop that took place at the Music Suite in Columbia. She was inducted to the Steinway & Sons Teachers Hall of Fame last year, and I am borrowing her studio photos she shared with her friends on social media last week. These photos are attached at the very end of this newsletter if you are interested.

Stay safe-

Ayako Tsuruta
MMAMTA President (through May 2021)
Musical America is now fully digital - ONLY
Musical America just announced it is going ONLY online!
"Our music world is in a period of transition. COVID has accelerated a trend that was already under way—everything is going digital, from performances to marketing and communications. Musical America Worldwide directory is going digital as well. It will look and perform differently, be accessible anywhere and anytime from a variety of digital devices and platforms. You can take it with you and, more importantly, your audience can find you at their fingertips quickly and with more tools such as top and bottom leaderboard and TOC rectangle ad placements."

Federation Festival Bulletin 2020-4
National Federation of Music Clubs is open to ALL instrumentalists and vocalists! Auditions usually takes place at the end of February - mid-March in Jefferson City and in Columbia.

Federation Festival Bulletin 2020-2024 is also available for purchase online. Click on the link below for instructions.

Protecting Yourself - Legally & Physically during COVID-19
Opening your studio back in-person in a middle of a pandemic - where vaccine is nowhere in sight - can be quite daunting. To open your studio for in-person lessons, it is important you have a conversation about your comfort level about this with your own family, and your students and their families.

On March 23, MTNA has shared its resource list that you may find helpful: https://www.mtna.org/MTNA/Learn/COVID19_Resources.aspx

Some basic advice:
  • Ask your student to wash their hands upon arrival,
  • Clean the surface of piano keys between each student; other instrumentalists will refrain from trading instruments for a while, and no touching;
  • Social distancing (6 ft), and/or
  • Ask the student leave a mask on if possible,
  • Ask everyone else to wait in car or elsewhere outside of your studio,
  • No communal magazines, toys etc,
  • Have hand sanitizers readily available (now possible to purchase from Amazon, Bath and Body Works, Menards, etc.) for everyone's use.

On May 27, MTNA sent this: " As a service to our state and local affiliates, MTNA has asked its legal counsel, Scott Gilligan, to answer these and other frequently asked questions. In addition, Mr. Gilligan has prepared an "Association Waiver and Release of Liability for Exposure to COVID-19" form you may use at your events. The form provides guidelines each attendee must follow, and, when signed, releases your association from liability due to COVID-19.

MTNA is delighted to provide this important legal resource to our affiliates free-of-charge.

The second PDF includes, " 6. Release of Liability. The Attendee hereby agrees to release and hold harmless the Association, its officers, directors, employees, and agents from any and all illnesses, injuries, sickness, death, or other losses arising in any way from Attendee’s attendance at and participation in the Event, including, but not limited to, exposure to COVID-19."

If you feel the need to have something to protect yourself just-in-case, you may need to have such agreement in writing. I strongly encourage you to read both PDF files, so that you are well informed how this may be possible.

Good luck!
Dr. Young Kim's studio set-up suggestions:
Dr. Kim has placed plexiglass between the two keyboards. Plexiglass is known to not alter the acoustic sound. Alternative is a clear shower curtain but visual is not nearly as good.
Her home studio is placed upon front entry, which is why teacher's piano is on the right side.
These were on sale at Sam's Club, however no longer. Similar shields can be easily found at Amazon however. These protect also your eyes.