As student groups adapt their missions for a remote semester, they're finding creative and innovative ways to stay connected and build community.

(Left to right) Tar Heels recruit students for the Tarpeggios, a coed a cappella group, in the Pit. (约翰尼·安德鲁斯/电子试玩)

As the business manager for the all-female a cappella group the 罗蕾莱, junior Everette Oxrider would typically be spending her free time at the start of the semester lining up fall gigs for Carolina group.

而不是, Oxrider has spent the past several days watching pre-recorded performances of potential new group members and working through the technical struggles that come with auditioning singers over Zoom.

But for Oxrider, the challenges are worth it as long as the 罗蕾莱 are still singing.

“We’re all shifting around our roles in the group so that we can still be there for each other, 我们的小组是一个支持网络吗, 虚拟地和对方在一起, be as safe as possible and continue making music because that’s our passion,”她说。.

Oxrider 和 罗蕾莱 are among the more than 800 student groups at Carolina adapting their fall plans to find ways to stay connected and continue their groups’ missions while they spend the semester away from campus because of the COVID-19 pandemic. From virtual theater to a cappella rehearsal on Zoom to digital game nights, students are finding ways to strengthen their community and build bonds with their classmates.


The initial challenge for many groups was simply finding the space to pursue their passions. 而Zoom在会议上很好用, 叙叙旧,偶尔一起吃顿饭,表演剧场, rehearsing a new a cappella set or playing a board game don’t naturally translate into a video chat.

而不是 of turning to their typical lineup of fall activities, student group leaders had to simplify and re-think their events to tailor them to a remote environment — even when being live and in-person is usually at the core of the group.

“在一个满是人的房间里, 那种艺术创作的神奇魔力, 你无法战胜它,Anish Pinnamaraju说, 的执行董事 实验室! 剧院, 卡罗莱纳最古老的学生剧团. “But I think that in a time where all of that is taken from us, 我们可以在网络社区建设中找到新的动力. 会有所不同,但这是我们需要的.”

而阶段不是实验室的选择! 今年秋天的剧院, the group has embraced a new approach to allow students to follow their acting, 写作, 直接利益. Last weekend, the group held its first Virtual Theatre event called “Viral Monologues.” The 24-hour event began with student-writers creating monologues for student-actors to perform and record. At the end of the event, the monologues were premiered in the new virtual theater.

Even if the approach feels closer to film and removes a significant theater element from the performances, Pinnamaraju knows the creative outlet is needed 和 group hopes to host similar events throughout the semester.

“对于我们目前的情况,这是一个有趣、创新的解决方案. It’s still an opportunity to express themselves artistically through 写作 or acting,” he said. “This pandemic has made it really hard for all of us because, 作为一个社区, we really depend on each other for the art we make and for our happiness. 我们很多人都需要创造这种艺术.”

Seeking a way for his own group to pursue their interests remotely, Fun桌面游戏网络 President John Fulghieri turned to online gaming platforms to continue the fun. The group, which typically revolves around Saturday night game nights on campus, now meets on 不和 玩虚拟游戏,与远方的朋友联系.

“It’s either a distraction or coping or just something to do to take your mind off the stress of the situation,fulgheri说.


成功地迅速转移到遥远的地方, Pinnamaraju说, 来自学生团体之间的紧密合作吗. 和多个剧团合作,包括 黑人艺术剧院公司, 公司卡贫民玩家在将想法变为现实的过程中,他起到了至关重要的作用.

“创新是唯一的解决方案,”他说. “The way we get to do that is through collaborating with each other. 否则,这几乎是不可能的.”

Oxrider has found the same support within the a cappella community as all the groups face similar challenges — from ways to hold rehearsals virtually to tips for successful remote auditions.

“它让更多的人集思广益, and it’s been really important to have the support of the larger a cappella community,”她说。. “There’s a lot of shared Google Docs and a lot of picking each other’s brains. 这是非常重要的.”

As the 罗蕾莱 prepare for a semester of virtual practices and all the challenges that brings, they’re relying on that collaboration to keep moving toward their goal of a virtual concert.

“It’s very trial and error, but we’re excited,” Oxrider said. “我们很高兴能继续有东西把我们团结起来.”