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Eikanger starts gradual return to rehearsal activity

The relaxation of Covid-19 regulations in Norway enables Eikanger-Bjørsvik to take careful steps to return to a calibrated rehearsal regime.

Smiles
  It is hoped the stepped return will eventually see the band return to full rehearsals

Eikanger-Bjørsvik Musikklag has told 4BR that it is looking at a gradual return to rehearsal following the relaxation of Norwegian government Coronavirus pandemic regulations and guidelines.

A national 'lockdown' was implemented in the country in early March, with a strict enforcement that affected all aspects of working and social life.

The band was due to start a recording session the day after the lockdown announcement for the publishing company Norsk Noteservice, as well as continue preparations for their appearance at the European Championships in Palanga.

To date (14th May) over 8,100 people have been infected by Covid-19 with 229 reported deaths in a population of roughly 5.4 million people.

Relaxation

Regulations have now been relaxed to allow all schools and kindergartens to open, with some businesses returning to work with appropriate restrictions in place to prevent a second wave of infection.

Public events involving a maximum of 50 people can now be held, with the possibility that this will be allowed to rise to 200 sometime in the next month or so.

Careful note

Speaking to 4BR, Eikanger spokesperson Viggo Bjørge said that the band has taken careful note of the appropriate information, regulations and guidelines and to gradually return to regular musical activity.

"We have undertaken a careful analysis and sought the necessary advice before we have gone ahead with this decision," Viggo said. "We are very mindful of the action that has been taken and the reasons behind doing it.

We have held back on the desire to start up fully again and have therefore decided to gradually return to normal."

He added: "Some members work in health related jobs, and cannot take part for a while, and this applies for their partners as well.

The Band Federation has published guidelines for rehearsals which demands minimum 1 meter distance between every player, strict hygiene procedures etc. We will be observing all these elements in full."

It is the policy of Eikanger-Bjørsvik to trust in and follow all guidelines and decisions made by our governmentViggo Bjørge

Three step plan

Viggo also revealed the band will appoint someone to implement the new guidelines and to observe the health related regulations as they look to start a three step plan which will first see three rehearsals undertaken with an extended 10-piece/ensemble of available players.

At the appropriate time it will be followed by two rehearsals with the band divided into two sections and finally by a full rehearsal when it is completely safe to do so.

"We hope this approach will enable us to work towards being able to return to our recording project and to enjoy some great new small ensemble music from Reid Gilje and Howard Snell helped by our friends at Bjørsvik Brass."

Trust in guidelines

Viggo concluded: "It is the policy of Eikanger-Bjørsvik to trust in and follow all guidelines and decisions made by our government. In the same manner the entire country respected the lockdown we also trust these will allow bands to get back into playing when following the directions given.

However, it also means that the band is fully prepared to stop all activity again if required.

We hope this is the start of a long term return to banding not only for us but for all our friends around the globe. We hope though that they will always remain safe at all times."

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