TUCSON (KVOA) - Due to COVID-19, it has been a while since we have heard the sounds of the drumline or seen the coordination of the color guard during a half-time performance.
Students are now making up for lost time at band camp.
Students from Rincon and University High Schools would typically be heading to Northern Arizona University for their annual, week-long summer band camp, however, this year things might look a bit different.
Luckily, the students do not mind, they are just thrilled to be back together.
More than 200 students gather in the Tucson Convention Center, going over drills, marching, learning how to play their instruments, how to spin color guard equipment, and more.
This is a sight Rincon University band director Jeff Marchant is thankful to see.
"When you're talking about an ensemble, trying to learn how to tune and phrase together," said Marchant. "They can't hear each other online, so last year was we shifted our focus to trying to preserve our culture and our work ethic."
This year's eight-day camp trains some students who went a whole year without a single performance in front of a crowd, including senior color guard member Elizabeth Williams.
"I feel like this year is our year that we are going to be able to just become so good, and be able to see everything that we have learned in the past before COVID, and everything that we learned during COVID, and just excel from here," said Williams.
Williams says being able to re-collaborate with her peers has been a special experience.
"We get to know people from every single section, the trombones, the clarinets, the trumpets, everyone from people in the guard, and just being able to come together, it's amazing," said Williams.
"All our ensembles are going to be able to play together in one room which is the only way to learn music is by playing with someone else," said Marchant. "Same with visual performance; color guard, tossing flags and rifles, they have to be able to see the group doing it, to see if they're in time with them. Nothing beats being together in the same room."
Marchant says the number of students from performing arts programs declined at every level last year and it is going to take a while to get them back.
But, having band camp in person is sure to have them marching in the right direction soon.