In the summer of 2020, the Covid-19 pandemic crisis was newly underway and I wanted to find a way to give back to the trombone community while finding a way to bring us together. During that time, I saw so many musicians struggling with social distancing and in financial need. Many of my students had summer plans cancelled and wished they could have a way to connect virtually during the difficult time.
After thinking of ways I could fill the needs of the trombone community, I pulled on my arts administration experience and founded the Virtual Trombone Workshop. Seeking to connect musicians during a time of isolation, VTW created an international community of over 500 trombonists who came together to support each other and their art. Participants in the first VTW described the event as “a highlight in dark times,” “truly a pleasure to participate in,” and “so much fun!”
In 2021, VTW was proud to have partnered with the Eastman School of Music to host a virtual event there. In both events, the purpose of VTW to provide outstanding education while promoting diversity, inclusion, and equity through programming, discussion, and representation was at the forefront. Participants enjoyed masterclasses, presentations, wellness and injury prevention initiatives, warmups and great discussions. All sessions had interactive components and throughout the events, community was always a priority.
What made VTW so special was the community. I was fortunate to be able to put together a fantastic team of people working to make this project a reality including Jeff Dunn and Sophie Volpe. The guest artists who so generously participated in this event were not just incredible artists, educators, but phenomenal people working together to make the world a little bit better. I am so grateful for all of the support VTW received and the amazing people that made it into the incredibly special series of events that it was.