Pandemic Reflections (Arizona State University)

By Kimberly Marshall

I feel incredibly fortunate to have been able to continue teaching my students in person throughout the pandemic. Arizona State University closed for two months right at the start from March-May 2020, but I was able to continue teaching my students in person on a beautiful Richards-Fowkes organ in Scottsdale, so we didn’t miss any lessons. The problem for the students was not being able to access the university’s practice organs, but most had church jobs and so were able to practice at their churches, not always the best instruments, but at least they got their lessons on a fine organ each week. I was able to get my students back into the School of Music for practice by the summer of 2020, and from then on, we were able to resume lessons in the ASU Organ Hall (Fritts and Traeri organs).

In lieu of live recitals during the pandemic, I presented a live-streamed Bach recital on the Richards-Fowkes organ where I was teaching; I also presented a streamed sound meditation on the ASU Fritts in January 2021. Thanks to my professorship in Malmö, I was able to perform in Sweden, perhaps the only Western country that did not shut down because of the pandemic. I have made four trips to Sweden since May 2020, and have been able to teach and perform extensively. I feel extremely fortunate to have had these opportunities and to have kept my students motivated during this difficult period.

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