As we all shelter in place or stay safer at home, we have all been made aware that our local small businesses and restaurants are suffering from the forced closures that are the result of the COVID-19 pandemic. But don’t forget about your local arts organizations. Your favorite theater group or music ensemble or museum or dance troupe. They have all been forced to cancel dozens to hundreds of performances or events. Some examples from my list of personal favorites.
The American Players Theater in Spring Green WI has been a favorite of mine for a long time and I have only missed one season since 2002. Their 2020 season was supposed to open June 6th with plays on both their outdoor and indoor stages. But while I was looking over the season and trying to select the plays I wanted to see…I got an email saying that they wouldn’t start on time and were stopping ticket sales. That sucks….and of course they have no idea when they can actually get underway. So instead they were selling passes that could be redeemed for future dates at either theater…but please buy them because they need the revenue right now. So I will do so…and maybe I need a new t-shirt too.
The Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra had to cancel the last two months of their season. They are graciously offering refunds to those who request it. But I will be taking them up on their other offer and ‘donating’ the remaining dates on my season tickets. It’s the least I can do for the joy and pleasure they’ve given me over the past 20 or more years.
I made sure that I renewed my memberships at the Museum of Wisconsin Art, the Art Institute of Chicago, and the Milwaukee Art Museum. I know that they are all closed but I want to make sure they are there for me when we are allowed to be free range art lovers again.
The Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation is looking for help as well…since they can’t open their 2020 season at Taliesin in Spring Green. This is a world heritage site that deserves our support as well.
And one of my favorites…the Milwaukee Repertory Theater is in similar straits. They’ve had to cancel the remainder of their 2019/20 season…but they have been trying to make the best of a bad situation…they’ve been providing any number of entertaining diversions on their website…take some time and enjoy! And their season subscription drive for 2020/21 us currently underway.
Now, I am not asking you to give to these examples per se (but it would be nice if you could). But if you have the means to do so, don’t forget to support YOUR favorite local arts groups and organizations. They are part of your community…they need your help…and they enrich our lives in myriad ways…and sitting here at home…I realize how much I miss them now…and how I would miss them if they failed to survive.
Be healthy. Be happy. Stay Safe.