Through the entire pandemic, the Harrisburg Choral Society Board has carefully and thoughtfully considered a vast amount of scientific information to base our decisions on creating a safe environment for singing. As the world has learned how the coronavirus works, we have learned from the science and continue to monitor the changing scientific discoveries. We have trusted the science throughout the pandemic and as numbers remain low, we continue to check in with our scientific and professional organizations for guidance including the Centers for Disease Control and the American Choral Director's Association, and we continue to trust the science.
Given the current information from scientific and professional organizations, the Harrisburg Choral Society will switch to mask optional for rehearsals and performances when community transmission rates for Dauphin county (and surrounding counties) are “low”. The HCS board will continue to monitor, and if community transmission rates rise, the board may require masks be worn at rehearsals and performances. This policy will go into effect on Monday, March 28. Masks can still be worn by singers that face greater risk factors.
The Harrisburg Choral Society will still require all members, staff, and associated participants to be fully vaccinated as a requirement to practicing and performing in-person for the 2021-22 Season. All participants will complete a Vaccination Declaration form, which will indicate their vaccination status (or non-status for members unable to be vaccinated). The HCS Board will file this information for record-keeping. Unvaccinated members with a legitimate medical concern will be able to participate in rehearsals virtually (see below), but will not be able to participate in concert performances with the Society.
Additionally, all singers will complete a Release of Liability in the case of someone coming to a rehearsal or performance, knowingly or unknowingly, infected with COVID-19. The Harrisburg Choral Society will not be held responsible if a member contracts the virus at an HCS sponsored event. It is the hope of the board that singers will work in coordination with taking all precautions seriously and honestly. As a COMMUNITY Choral Society, we must keep our community as safe as possible.
We are also asking our staff and members to be diligent with their actions during our operating season. The Society asks all our members to monitor your own health: If you feel ill, please stay home rather than attending rehearsal. If you find you have had contact with someone COVID-19 positive, please stay home if you are unsure of your own exposure or if you have a positive test.
The Harrisburg Choral Society will be setting up a Zoom Virtual Rehearsal session every week for those members who are unable to join rehearsals in person. Members can connect to listen to the rehearsal and view instruction and direction. While we appreciate our loyal members who want to attend every rehearsal, and the HCS wishes high attendance from all our singers, we must maintain the health and safety of all our members. The Zoom Virtual Rehearsal will ensure members who must miss rehearsals are able to keep up with our music preparation.
The Harrisburg Choral Society has successfully returned to regular in-person rehearsals and performances, and as our situation changes we will continue to adjust our policies and requirements to remain in compliance with government mandates and accepted policies.