The bell rings a shrill screech on the first day of the 2021 school year. The bright morning light shines through the chorus room window and the newly tuned piano waits to be played. He can almost hear the harmonies from the incoming chorus class. Mr. Mallitz is ready to begin his first school day in person and a year full of many other firsts.
“Being new to the district last year, I wanted to try to build as many relationships as possible, so when we did come back this year there would already be a foundation,” said Mr. Mallitz. “Being able to truly make music and listen and learn from each other has been such a large part of our success this year.”
Last year COVID-19 raged throughout the country, causing the school year to be virtual or a hybrid model most of the year. This was difficult for Mr. Mallitz, starting his first year teaching virtually and not being able to make music because the sound wouldn’t pick up over zoom. Finally, the 2021-2022 in-person school year allowed him to put music together and connect with students, many of whom he had only seen over a computer screen before.
“My first concert here at PV was a lot of fun,” said Mr. Mallitz. “Even though it was my first concert here, it was the 17th Winter Concert of my career, so coming into it with that previous experience helped me enjoy the evening.”
It was also his first concert here at PV in the winter of 2021. The concert was the first in almost two years, and many students and parents were very excited. The previous year no concerts were put on due to COVID-19 space restrictions. Rigorous full group choir rehearsals commenced to prepare for the concert. One of the most exciting firsts for Mr. Mallitz though, was having his daughter.
“When it comes to the school year, her being here has put into perspective what’s truly important and has allowed me to say no to various non-work related things that I probably would have agreed to,” said Mr. Mallitz.
On top of the year moving to in-person, the first concert, and planning for the spring musical, Mr. Mallitz is taking care of his five month old daughter. An exciting event for both his choir students and himself.
Mr. Mallitz has already made a huge impact on the music program. Many of his students have expressed their gratitude and appreciation for all he has done, even during these difficult and uncertain times.