The past few weeks have brought dramatic change to us all as the COVID-19 pandemic has spread across the country. As we consider the safety of our participants and performers, several us in the organization have been in constant discussion, trying to work out if it might be possible to produce the 2020 Bloomington Early Music Festival. With a decision by Indiana University to limit gatherings until mid-May and the recent predictions that the virus may well last through the summer, we regretfully announce that BLEMF2020 has been cancelled.
Despite the decision to cancel this year’s festival, we remain as committed as ever to presenting and supporting early music in Bloomington and surrounding region and look forward to welcoming you to future events. In addition, we plan to present online performances during the next weeks and months to keep us all inspired by outstanding musicians near and far.
We’re especially mindful of the challenges artists face at this time. The sudden decline of income for many of them due to cancelled performances will have a long-lasting, sometimes devastating effect. Being mindful of this and in honor our commitment to musicians who were to perform at this year’s Bloomington Early Music Festival, the Board has decided to pay 50% of the anticipated fees to all 2020 artists.
With your help and support, we know that you would agree that this is an appropriate action for us to take. We also welcome any additional contributions that you might consider making to help us manage our organization in these uncertain times.
As always, we remain indebted to the extraordinary musicians who continue to make our Festival possible, our many partners who believe in collaborative possibilities, and you, our dear supporters, who have believed in our efforts that now span 26 years.
With grateful thanks,
Alain Barker, Paul Borg, Aaron Cain, Alison Calhoun, Micah Fleming, Paulina Francisco, Sally Gaskill, Julie Lawson, Dana Marsh, Stanley Ritchie, Thomas Schaller, and Shelley Taylor