WHS welcomes Eldridge as new chorus teacher

Mr.+Eldridge+conducting+his+class+outside.

Grace Kirk

Mr. Eldridge conducting his class outside.

Grace Kirk, Photo editor

Instead of the usual start to the class of singing through scales and warming up, chorus starts with the small group of masked singers filing outside to prepare for class. Mr. Eldridge will now be teaching at both the middle school and the high school. Even with the restrictions due to COVID-19, chorus is finding their own way to get in practice time with the help of Eldridge.

Eldridge has been a teacher at the Weston schools for nine of the past 10 years and has had over 20 years of experience teaching music.

“As somebody who has worked part-time for a number of years, the transition has been very smooth. I know all the singers, I know all the  faculty, and I am still very close to the middle school because I do still teach some students down there,” Eldridge stated.

Class has certainly been different for all members of chorus, but Eldridge continues to bring high energy and encouragement to class everyday.

“He’s always hyping up students and encouraging them to sing and speak loudly and be proud of the work we are putting in as a group,” sophomore Ava Angelucci stated.

During a normal year of chorus, Eldridge would be preparing the singers for their Masquerade concert. Instead, Eldridge has been preparing the singers for their virtual concert which will be broadcasted in late December.  

“We are going to have concerts this year. They will be over Zoom and most likely will be pre-recorded, engineered, and then broadcasted. Our dream is that towards the end of the year that we might be able to do live-streamed concerts if everything with this pandemic goes well,” Eldridge said. 

Although Eldridge and other members of the chorus program have worked to make chorus as safe and efficient as possible, there is still a chance of the class not being able to continue.

Whether Chorus happens moving forward will be a decision made by the Massachusetts Department of Education. We have no current plans of offering something different if we were directed not to have chorus classes. I think we would try to have chorus meet remotely if chorus class were not able to meet live,” vice principal Kelly Flynn said.

Similar to chorus, the other music programs have also adapted to these new rules by having short school periods where they go over the dynamics of the music. They then go outside for around 10 to 15 minutes, spaced out and in masks to sing through the music like they would in a regular class. 

“We’re going to do virtual choirs so the kids are all going to be recorded at home without headphones onto a backing track and then we’ll combine all that into one big virtual choir which you’ve probably seen on social media,” music department head Christopher Memoli said. “It could be, as the year progresses they loosen some of those requirements,”