Mandatory Social Distancing is my third foray into the world of multi stream video virtual ensemble projects (besides a short stint of dabbling with that certain multi stream phone app). Before working on MSD, I did two projects for the Blue Stars Drum & Bugle Corps - one of which we shared widely (the corps song) and one of which we buried and will never see the light of day (my first go at these kinds of project, and quite a learning experience).
With the publication of the Blue Stars video and with my on-going social media commentary throughout the process of MSD, I've gotten a number of questions from folks who want to do something similar: "How did you do it?" "What program do you use?" - I decided to put together this blog post to answer those questions in one place and to offer a fair word of warning.
Probably in this space is where I should mention the rippling consequences of the COVID-19 situation, the various shut-downs around the country, and of course, the need for musicians to still find a way to perform in ensembles together. If you're here reading this, I don't need to say anything more about the situation: you already get it. You might be a band director with an administrator asking you to toss together a video of your kids - "How cool would that be??"
In the words of Samuel L. Jackson from Jurassic Park: Hold on to your butts.