I don’t know about you, but I’ve been relying on music something fierce to keep me sane and calm(ish) during this time in quarantine. And despite the fact that we can’t go out to see their performances, the Colorado Symphony is working to keep the music in audiences’ ears.
“We hope that you and yours are safe, well, and in good spirits during this uneasy time while enjoying your favorite song, work, or maybe performing something yourself,” wrote Jerome H. Kern, CEO and chair of the board of trustees, in an email to symphony supporters. “We are committed to getting back on the stage as soon as we’re able while maintaining our infrastructure with the financial strength we’ve developed over the past decade.”
The most visible way the symphony is keeping its work alive is through its #PlayOn series, which lets people enjoy different kinds of performances until at least May 11. About three weeks ago the symphony shared a digital version of Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy” on YouTube, which quickly gained traction on social media, earning about 500,000 views. Other videos the organization has shared include bassoon excerpts from “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice” and horn-players performing The Police’s “Don’t Stand So Close to Me.”
For long time supporters of the symphony, there’s also the opportunity to go back in time with Virtual Music Hours — a weekly replay of archival audio recordings that people can stream. To make the concert even more special, they feature conductor and musician introductions and concert activities.
“We are also in the process of developing educational content for children and parents for use while we shelter in place,” Kern noted.
On the financial side of things, staff has been working to get a handle on what the future will look like with concerts being postponed and an uncertain timeframe as to when things will reopen.
There are a myriad of ways for supporters to help out the symphony during this time in limbo — some as simple as sharing information about the symphony on social media and making donations to shopping via Amazon Smile (which allows 0.5 percent of your purchase to go to a charity of your choice) and getting involved through the Community First Foundation.
“With your support, in any and all forms, we will #PlayOn,” Kern wrote. “We look forward to the time when your Colorado Symphony can again perform for you at Boettcher Concert Hall.”
To engage with the symphony and support it, visit www.coloradosymphony.org/-PlayOn.
Outdoor activity - visit Crown Hill Park
If you’re craving some time in a little oasis that allows you to feel like you’re away from it all, Wheat Ridge’s Crown Hill Park, 9357 W. 26th Ave., is the picture-perfect destination.
The 229-acre park has 10.1 miles of trail (though it’s worth noting the Wildlife Sanctuary portion of the park is closed through June 30 to protect nesting and brooding waterfowl), including wetlands near Crown Hill Lake. There are plenty of space for you to explore, and keep the necessary distance away from people, and as its spring, don’t be surprised to see wildlife popping up.
Remember to maintain social distancing rules, and don’t visit any public spaces if you’re feeling unwell. Visit www.jeffco.us/1207/Crown-Hill-Park for more information.
Clarke’s Concert of the Week - Lissie at your home
Singer/songwriter Elisabeth Corrin Maurus - who performers under the name Lissie — is a longstanding favorite in the metro area, and has played all over the state (she attended Colorado State University for a couple years). In 2019 she released an achingly lovely retrospective album called “When I’m Alone,” which proved she’s the perfect person to be one of the growing number of musicians doing solo acoustic shows from their homes.
Lissie will be performing at 1 p.m. on Sunday, April 19, with 20% of proceeds going to the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund for the World Health Organization, Meals on Wheels and the Secoya Coronavirus Isolation Fund (which is providing supplies for the elders of Amazonian tribes to be able to quarantine).
Visit https://lissie.veeps.com to see the show.
Streaming style - ‘Better Things’
Pamela Adlon’s “Better Things” has been a quiet miracle of a show since its premiere in 2016, and in its currently airing fourth season, the laughs are deeper, the winces sharper and the depth of humanity in everyday life more on vibrant display.
Adlon plays a semi-autobiographical version of herself in the character of Sam Fox, a working actor and single mother to three dynamic and challenging daughters. Audiences meet members of Sam’s family, her friends, castmates and the constellation of interesting people she (and any of us, really) come across in our daily lives. Episodes often feel like their own short films, and can breathtaking in their reach and complexity (an episode in the current season that takes Sam to New Orleans for a wedding includes several perfect moments).
We’re all currently being reminded of our shared humanity, and that’s the focus of “Better Things.” New episodes air Thursday evening, and previous episodes can be streamed on-demand and on Hulu.
Clarke Reader’s column on culture appears on a weekly basis. He can be reached at Clarke.Reader@hotmail.com.
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