The number of high school students auditioning for competitive bands has dramatically decreased in Connecticut and the U.S. since the COVID-19 pandemic. Every musician has a predicament– COVID-19 is an airborne virus. They are unable to perform in public. This was a major setback not only for present musicians but also for the generation of high school musicians working to enter the professional world. “From what I’ve gathered from speaking to colleagues across the states, and actually across the nation, our programs have all taken a hit,” said Anne Halloran Tortora, a former music teacher at Saint Bernard High School in Uncasville and the current news editor for the Connecticut Music Educators Association (CMEA).