The World Ensemble
Dear Subscriber,

Programs around the world continue to inspire us with their innovations in distance learning. This May Resource Basket brings you plenty of ways to adapt your work to the Internet, as well as other resources for artists at risk and programs looking to increase their impact.

For a comprehensive list of COVID-19 resources, please visit The World Ensemble website. And if you have a few minutes, please take our survey to help us more effectively serve the field.

Thanks for reading, and stay safe,

Tricia Tunstall, Executive Editor
Patrick Scafidi, Managing Editor
Dr. Ryan Welsh, Associate Editor
Longy School of Music of Bard College, Publisher
Support for Artistic Expression in Africa
In collaboration with nine partner organizations, Freemuse is co-launching an initiative called Amani: Africa Creative Defence Network . It is designed to protect and assist creatives at risk in Africa, providing rapid response to vulnerable artists by coordinating and supporting regional safe havens in Africa. Creative professionals at risk because of their work can fill out a secure form here , available in English and French, or email . Click here to learn more online. This initiative is designed to streamline communication and respond to crises with urgency—please share it with colleagues across the continent.
Live Arts in the Virtual World
Global lockdown measures have devastated the performing arts, but that hasn’t stopped artists from creating innovative solutions in order to do their work. In facing the challenge of transitioning from real life to the Internet, artists and teachers everywhere are asking the critical question: What does this mean for the future of our sector? IETM (International network for contemporary performing arts) sought to find out, compiling a report based on a short survey circulated among its members. The report presents seven key ideas regarding digitalization, offering potential solutions and furthering the discussion happening between arts workers everywhere. In these isolated times, those discussions can often feel private or overly specific; this report not only makes those conversations public but also presents policy messages to help us continue our work with renewed focus.

Sound Therapy
You have seen the many eager offers of free concerts, free masterclasses, free ways to enjoy music in this disrupted time. During periods of stress, this makes more sense than you may realize—a new study from the British Academy of Sound Therapy finds that music takes 13 minutes to “release sadness" and 9 minutes to make you happy. Read about it here, and investigate the research here. We all use music to dispel our sadness and lift our spirits; pretty much everyone does. Now we have the research to back us up.
During these challenging times, Ottawa, Canada's OrKidstra is finding new ways to help empower kids and build community through music at home. Right now, OrKidstra is sharing free access to its popular KiddlyWinks videos. These videos are designed to help children develop and learn through music—a critical issue facing parents and guardians everywhere in the wake of school closures. Liven up these early summer days with this free, engaging resource for children. OrKidstra also shares a series of professionally filmed music-learning videos that invite singing, playing, moving, and learning about music, available on their website.

Finding Joy and Connection through Music
Engagement, a key component in successful learning, can be elusive in distance-learning contexts. This recent article, part of an EdSurge research series, cites several studies in offering methods designed to increase or maintain the three primary components of engagement—behavioral, cognitive, and emotional. Since effective teaching goes beyond the students themselves, you’ll learn ways to “Increase Parent Engagement in a Remote Classroom” and “Facilitate Connections Between Students in a Remote Classroom.” The authors also suggest online teaching tools to help teachers in their essential work.
El Sistema Sweden Announces
"Side by Side: Digital"
El Sistema Sweden has long planned to create a digital platform for Side by Side, with inspiring content and lively interaction around the camp. Now they are taking the opportunity created by this pandemic to realize those plans. All those who have been admitted as a camp participant will receive a refund of their participation fee in addition to an invitation to their digital platform—a completely unique Side by Side that no one has experienced before. As a result of going digital, Side by Side has announced that registration remains free and open to young people interested in attending the virtual camp. Check the Side by Side FAQ page and their social media pages for more information. And keep an eye out for a feature article in the June issue of The World Ensemble about how this mammoth festival plans to go virtual.

IFACCA: Supporting Culture in the Digital Age
The International Federation of Arts Councils and Culture Agencies ( IFACCA) has released its Public Report “ Supporting Culture in the Digital Age”—the product of research undertaken from October 2019 to March 2020. Though the report does not include recent developments in the field as a result of the pandemic, it establishes a crucial benchmark in the documentation of the sector and reveals new avenues for programs to pursue in the long term.
Statement by UNESCO Ministers of Culture
In late April, UNESCO held its first-ever online meeting of Ministers of Culture, during which the ministers discussed the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on the cultural sector and shared their policy responses. They agreed on a joint Declaration that welcomes the existing measures taken by Member States and the European Commission; highlights the essential role of arts and culture; makes a shared commitment to act and respond to developments; and reaffirms the signatories’ determination to take decisive policy action to support the cultural and creative sectors in the current time of crisis and beyond. Here is the joint statement by EU Culture Ministers about the COVID-19 crisis.

Webinar about Alternatives to Zoom Meetings
Are you sick of Zoom meetings? Are you teaching lessons online using an awkward platform? Do you wonder if there are more dynamic ways to collaborate, plan, and teach in a digital studio? There may be. A free webinar on May 21 at 9:00 a.m. Pacific time in the U.S. will explore four promising tools for distance collaboration and learning, from interesting alternatives to Zoom, to meetings that benefit from more interactivity, to platforms that support augmented and virtual reality. Register for “Adapting to Disruption: Tools for Distance Collaboration” today.
A Single Instrument Quartet
Oh, how we all long to play music together again. Whenever that day comes, here’s an example of how we can make up for lost time—Ravel’s Bolero, played by four musicians using just one cello. Be warned: this definitely does not meet social distancing standards.
Thank you for reading! 

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