OWU Performing Arts Department
Safety Protocols for Applied Music Activities

(Updated August 2021)

The following safety protocols recognize that certain musical activities can contribute to the higher aerosol transmission of SARS CoV-2. They are largely based on the updated guidelines of the Peabody Institute of Music at Johns Hopkins University (released June 9 , 2021) and the updated guidelines of the International Coalition Performing Arts Aerosol Study (released July 9, 2021). These protocols are intended to supplement, but not supersede, OWU’s Safe Campus Guide (COVID-19) and the guidance of the Delaware County General Health District.

Protocols may continue to evolve with the changing severity of pandemic conditions.

Cleaning and Sanitizing

Contact transmission of Covid-19 has been shown to be far less common than originally thought. Thus, strict cleaning protocols are no longer required. However, good hand hygiene is still strongly encouraged, and hand sanitizer will continue to be available throughout the building. 

Private Instruction 

  1. Private lessons for Strings, guitar, harp, percussion, piano and composition (Analogous to normal classroom recommendations):
    1. Masks worn at all times
    2. No distancing requirement
    3. Lessons of no more than 60 minutes
    4. Air exchanges no longer required
  2. Private lessons for winds, brass, and voice:
    1. Masks may be removed during playing/singing
    2. Social distancing of 3 ft. (4.5 ft on-center) for instrumentalists; 6 ft. for singers
    3. Lessons of no more than 60 minutes
    4. Air exchanges no longer required
    5. Practice water key etiquette. Water keys should not be emptied on the floor. Drape water valve and collect condensate in towel, bucket with disposable plastic bag, puppy pad, or WindSorb Disinfect towel/WindSorb after use. Instrument bell should not be directed at the other person.
  3. If the University’s universal indoor mask mandate is lifted, masking requirements for vaccinated students will be left to the instructor’s discretion.

Ensemble Classes 

  1. Instrumental Ensembles, Repertoire and Studio Classes:
    1. Masks may be removed by brass and wind students only when playing their instrument. If available, masks with a small slit for mouthpiece access may be used.
    2. Social distancing of 3 ft (4.5 ft on-center) for wind and brass instruments, with an additional 3 ft. (total of 6 ft.) in front of trombones to account for slides in their fully extended positions. Distancing may be adjusted according to local conditions.
    3. Bell covers not required.
    4. Rehearsals of normal class length.
    5. Room vacancy after rehearsal to allow for adequate air exchange.
    6. Practice water key etiquette—drape water valve and collect condensate in towel, bucket with disposable plastic bag, puppy pad, or WindSorb Disinfect towel/WindSorb after use. Water keys should not be emptied on the floor.
  2. Choral Ensembles and Music Theatre Workshop:
    1. Masking required for all individuals at all times, including while singing.
    2. Social distancing of 6 ft (7.5 ft on-center). Distancing may be adjusted according to local conditions, but should not be below 3 ft.
    3. Rehearsals of normal class length.
    4. Room vacancy after rehearsal to allow for adequate air exchange.
  3. Since ensemble work presents a higher risk of transmission than normal classroom activities or private lessons, masks will be required of everyone in all rehearsals and performances even if the University’s universal indoor mask mandate is lifted.
  4. Ensemble directors should consider using a portable amplifier to remain speaking at a low, conversational volume. Students should also ask questions in a low conversational volume with a mask.
  5. No instruments should be shared between students.

Sanborn Practice Room Policies

  1. Practice rooms are open to all students. However, after-hours access is limited to students registered for applied lessons or ensembles or who have evening class meetings in Sanborn. Exceptions may be requested by contacting department chair Frank Chiou (fnchiou@owu.edu).
  2. Please write on the Sign-In/Sign-Out sheet the date and exact time you start and finish using the room. Before using a room, you should always check the most recent “Time Out” entry to ensure that there has been adequate time (around 30 minutes) for room rest.
  3. Avoid entering and leaving the room repeatedly to take breaks, and do not be absent from the room for more than 10 minutes, as this reduces the useable time for the room for others.
  4. Wash or sanitize your hands before and after using the piano.
  5. WW/Brass players: practice water key etiquette as indicated in the OWU Music Safety Protocols. Under no circumstances should any fluid from instruments be emptied onto the floor of the practice room.
  6. Aside from water bottles, all food and beverages are strictly prohibited.
  7. Windows may be opened while practicing—it is, in fact, encouraged for WW/brass players and singers except in cold weather—but remember to shut them before leaving. Close the blinds if sunlight is shining directly on the piano.

Department Contact Info

Location

Ohio Wesleyan University
61 S. Sandusky St.
Delaware, OH 43015
P 800-922-8953
F 740-368-3314

Department Contacts

Chair: Frank Chiou
Associate Professor of Music
740-368-3704
fnchiou@owu.edu

Academic Assistant: Lisa Hill
740-368-3700 (Sanborn)
740-368-3846 (Chappelear)
lahill@owu.edu