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Fort Dodge Masks Stop COVID-19 But Not The Music

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FORT DODGE, Iowa — When school ended suddenly last spring due to COVID-19, students in the A capella Choir did not get to have their year-end concert. When class resumed this fall, masks were mandatory. But most students were surprised when it came to the A capella Choir, they had some strange looking masks to wear. The idea is to keep COVID from spreading, but let the music out.

“When we first got them I was kind of skeptical because the way they look they’re kind of funny looking,” said Malaney Bwetrick, a junior choir student. “When I tried them on I realize how much of a difference they actually made singing it was so much easier to sing and breathe.”

The school purchased over 40 of the masks, so every member of the group could have one.

“This is something that was suggested by the ACDA American Choral Directors Association, and their mask that are specifically designed for singing,” said Fort Dodge High School Vocal Music Instructor Matt Drees. “This is something that was suggested by the ACDA American choral directors association and their mask that are specifically designed for singing.”

The Fort Dodge A capella Choir is made up of sophomores up to seniors at the school. It’s the group which features the top singers in the school.

“Each year the students audition, they have to sing for us, they also do some site reading where they demonstrate music literacy,” said Drees.

“So the masks allow for more space so we can enunciate more and we can hear our words better,” said senior Joey Kelley. “Overall I think they’re way easier to sing in than a traditional mask. they look a little silly but they definitely work.”

The students will be doing a fall concert. It will be done virtually for people to watch on-line.

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