The University of Mount Olive Symphonic Band and Jazz Band will perform in concert 7 p.m. Oct. 14 in the Hazel Waters Kornegay Assembly Hall.

The concert is open to the public. Admission is free.

Because of COVID-19, band rehearsals have looked and sounded different during the past year and a half, UMO public relations director Rhonda Jessup said in a news release announcing the concert.

“Making music in the midst of a pandemic meant big changes in the rehearsal hall,” Jessup said. “Wearing masks until seated, chairs arranged 6 feet apart, large plastic shields between each student, and an additional large shield attached to the music stands were all measures taken to create a safe practice environment.”

The need for additional spacing meant the percussion students had to move to the floor below the stage instead of performing behind the band. A platform was built 20 feet in front of the stage.

“It is a long distance to view conducting moves and hear musical direction, but we are determined to make it work,” director Bill Ford said.

The musicians have adjusted in rehearsals to a sound dynamic that takes longer to bounce between percussion, woodwinds and brass.

“Being able to practice in person has felt like the only normal in a time that hasn’t been normal for anyone,” Ford said.

He said he is excited about showcasing the talents of his students in concert.

“I hope that you will join us and enjoy an evening of music performed by this dedicated group of musicians,” he said.

Hazel Waters Kornegay Assembly Hall is located at 207 Wooten St. in Mount Olive.

For more information, email Ford at

The University of Mount Olive is a private institution rooted in the liberal arts tradition with defining Christian values. The university is sponsored by the Convention of Original Free Will Baptists. For more information, visit