You’ve probably seen a torrent of notices about things that aren’t happening anymore (I have…), so I want to change that tone a little bit – I hope most of this message resonates about things that WILL happen. COVID-19 is a global pandemic and things you do now do matter. Get good information.
It seems apparent that the spring dance recital season is essentially over well before it began. As someone whose income depends on groups of people gathering together, I know this is a very real, very scary proposition across the dance community. This pandemic will force dramatic and rapid economic, social, and personal changes on everyone, and those changes are unpredictable. Times of crisis do make great art, but that won’t make 2020 less challenging as it unfolds in real-time for you. If you want to talk about this stuff, I’m happy to do so.
I WILL continue to work on dance, but I probably won’t be inviting you to meet me for lunch or dinner anytime soon, and I probably won’t see you at a spring concert this year. That makes engaging with what you’re doing (or not doing…) more difficult, but more important than ever. The Baltimore Regional Dance Survey continues (please continue to participate and share…). Work on the Lord Baltimore Theater continues (please reach out with your thoughts and skills…). Work on documenting dance in the region continues (please tell me those stories…). Please do get in [electronic or telephonic] touch.
Some other potential things-to-do:
- The Maryland State Arts Council is holding three (for now) “Listening sessions” – March 19 and 20 (so far no weekends scheduled). More information here: https://www.msac.org/news/msac-listening-session-how-can-we-help
- If you are not insured, or know someone who is not insured, I urge you to do some shopping. The Maryland health insurance exchange has opened a special enrollment period through April 15: https://www.marylandhealthconnection.gov/coronavirus-sep/ This is probably a really good year to have health insurance…
- If you run a business (for example, a dance studio…), the Maryland Department of Commerce has assembled potentially useful information here: https://businessexpress.maryland.gov/coronavirus Information includes employment/unemployment and things like low-interest loans, taxes, and permits.
- The Maryland State Arts Council has a new grant program – “Special Request Grants.” Information here: https://www.msac.org/programs/special-request-grant This is a relatively restricted program (designed to fill gaps in existing grant programs), and for this first round, the funding period is a bit more than one year (this cycle ends June 30, 2021). Funding is available now, but may be depleted before the end of the cycle (not clear on that…). Apply early.
- The Maryland State Arts Council has a new grant program –
- “Professional Development Opportunity Grants.” Information here:
- https://www.msac.org/programs/professional-development Funding available up to $2000. This funding period is much shorter, ending June 30, 2020, but application is required 90 days prior to the funded activity, which means apply now for activities in June.
Please stay home.
Please keep dancing.
Please reach out to people directly and personally. They will miss seeing/dancing/working with you. I will miss you.
Simple acts of kindness do matter. Point out beauty when you can. Bring a little joy to someone.
If there is something I can do, please let me know.