Local Band Directors Create Coachella Valley’s First Virtual Concert Band

Nico Payne

Students from all over Coachella Valley are collaborating in what is being called the first virtual concert band. The students are being led by band teachers throughout the valley, but one guy is helping make this virtual experience come together.

NBC Palm Springs spoke to the local band director who is making it all happen. His name is Mr. Ingleson, he is the Band Director ant Desert Hot Springs High School, and he shared how this idea all came together.

With over 80 students participating in the first challenge, Matt Ingleson explained that the inspiration for this idea came from social media.

“A county band in like Georgia or something had 500 students come out and perform this piece by Tyler Grant. Literally, I just posted a comment and a bunch of other band directors started chiming in, and the next day I put together a website and the rest is kind of history,” explained Ingleson.

The website features challenge number #2 with steps to help participants download sheet music and upload their videos. And it’s not only for students, anyone can participate, state and countrywide.

“We had a Math teacher in Illinois, we had another music teacher in Texas that submitted a video. and just a ton of community members, so this is for everybody,” added Ingleson.

High School Seniors who won’t be finishing their school year, say they are happy to have an outlet involving music.

“Challenge one was a little bit of a challenge because it’s so different not playing with an actual live orchestra and it just gives a different feeling but it was also very nice having that experience to be able to play with an orchestra again,” said Cathy Avila, Senior at Cathedral City High School. 

“I’m actually very glad that this valley is uniting and having all the band directors communicating so that students can still play because music is such an outlet for all of us and especially in a time like this, we need to come together and find forces of happiness and hope because that’s what music is for a lot of us musicians,” explained Luz Quintanilla, Senior at Cathedral City High School.

The schedule for the challenges will run from Wednesday to Wednesday. Challenge two is already up and challenges three and four are in the making.

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