Classical Movements: Status and Measures Taken due to Coronavirus

Even with the serious and harmful impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the arts and the travel industry, after more than 27 years of good financial stewardship and prudent management Classical Movements remains in stable financial condition. Despite the unpredictability of the current situation, we are moving forward with a number of measures and to plan for the future after the crisis.

Classical Movements Hits Pause
on our New Music Program
In order to more effectively direct our attention and resources, Classical Movements has put the Eric Daniel Helms New Music Program on hiatus. Classical Movements remains committed to 17 commissions scheduled to premiere by June 2021 - including 12 whose originally scheduled premieres were postponed due to the coronavirus .

Since 2006, Classical Movements has commissioned 97 new works of music for orchestra, choir and chamber ensembles by 94 composers from 30 countries, two-thirds being women and/or composers of color . Composers commissioned by the New Music Program include well-established and emerging names, such as Kinan Azmeh, Therese Birkelund Ulvo, John Corigliano, Paquito D’Rivera, Reena Esmail, Libby Larsen, Mokale Koapeng, Jessie Montgomery, Tania León, Christopher Rouse, Caroline Shaw, Christopher Theofanidis and Joan Tower. Commissioned composers have won a combined total of 5 Grammys, 4 Pulitzers, an Oscar and a MacArthur Grant.
32 tours cancelled or postponed due to coronavirus in 2019-20
Since announcing our 28 th tour season in November 2019, four tours operated as planned before the coronavirus emerged as an international concern. Since January 2020, Classical Movements has carefully monitored the situation and communicated closely with our clients regarding developments, at first in Asia, then Italy and finally all over the world. At the time, Classical Movements’ tour season included tours of China and Japan in February, as well as tours to Italy and Asia during the spring and summer.

Due to the pandemic, 32 tours between March and July have been cancelled or postponed ; many clients have decided to undertake their tours in later seasons, when travel is once again possible.

Classical Movements offers
clients generous refunds

 "Canceling this tour was such a difficult decision to make, but I'm grateful for how graceful and accommodating you and Classical Movements have been throughout this process."
- Administrative Director of a university orchestra program

"While we can’t necessarily control our environment, we can control our actions. Yours remind me of why we have worked with you and your staff for so long, and why we will be friends for life."
- Conductor and Artistic Director

As clients started to cancel their tours, Classical Movements staff worked early and diligently to secure refunds from around the world, above and beyond what was required under the terms of their contracts. This process has already demanded considerable resources by all 12 members of our staff for two months and continues even now.
We recognize not only the unprecedented nature of this crisis, but the hardships it has placed on the arts especially. Due to our foresight, early actions and our strong international network Classical Movements is proud to have been able to mitigate losses through our own generosity and diligence and we have been gratified by how appreciative people have been by the results.

2020 Prague Summer Nights: Young
Artists Music Festival cancelled
As the situation around the world became increasingly disruptive and less predictable , Classical Movements made the difficult decision to cancel its 2020 Prague Summer Nights: Young Artists Music Festival which was scheduled for a start date of June 15 with over one hundred students and 20 faculty.

After already receiving hundreds of applications for its voice, orchestra, conducting, stage directing and arts administration programs, casting was well underway at the time of this decision and more than half of participants have accepted the opportunity to defer their acceptance to the summer of 2021 , when the festival will present productions of Mozart’s Don Giovanni and Le nozze di Figaro originally planned for this year.

In addition to Prague Summer Nights, the Ihlombe! South African Choral Festival has also been cancelled for July 2020.
Serenade! Washington, D.C. Choral Festival still being Evaluated

A final decision has not yet been made for the 10 th annual Serenade! Washington, D.C. Choral Festival celebrating "World Voices for Women". It is currently scheduled for July 15-21, 2020, and described by the Washington Post as “perhaps the most international ensemble I’ve ever heard, apart from the Olympic Games,” Serenade! is one of three annual festivals produced by Classical Movements.
The road ahead: Classical Movements actively working on future projects
Since March 16 (before the Virginia, Maryland and DC stay-at-home orders), Classical Movements staff have worked from home full-time. In addition to the extensive work required to navigate cancellations, Classical Movements continues to work on several tours scheduled after September 2020, as well as in 2021, 2022 and beyond , and to prepare requested proposals and otherwise anticipate the day when travel is once again a possibility. When that time comes, Classical Movements has encouraged our clients to consider domestic tours, which offer valuable and memorable performance experiences, while placing less logistical and financial strain on ensembles emerging from strenuous circumstances.
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