Thursday, May 25, 2023

The Show Must Go Outdoors

The audience was able to spread out and enjoy the music and the landscape during the Concord Band outdoor concert last summer at the 210-acre Fruitlands Museum in Harvard MA.
(photo courtesy Catherine Shortliffe)

Nearly three years since the COVID pandemic shut down public events across the region, local arts groups have adapted by embracing or expanding the use of outdoor performance spaces.

“Creative people are problem-solvers,” said Michael Bobbitt, executive director of the Mass Cultural Council, a state agency that promotes inclusion, education, and diversity in the arts, humanities, and sciences. “Creative makers can make any space a cultural space.”

“For us, it is about forward-thinking,” said Michael Busack, portfolio director of the 210-acre Fruitlands Museum in Harvard, a Trustees of Reservations property. “Our audiences are seeking a meaningful arts experience, but in a safer way. I remember in September 2020, our first outdoor concert was limited to 50 people, including the performers and staff. Afterward people came up to me in tears to say thank you.”

Since then, Fruitlands has continually expanded its 40-year-old outdoor concert program — doubling the number of events from six to 12 in 2022. A similar full schedule of outdoor concerts is planned for 2023.

“Utilizing public outdoor spaces to bring people together is important,” said Bobbitt. “Consumption of the arts at indoor venues is going be vulnerable for a number of years. “From the Berkshires to the oceanfront, Massachusetts has the most amazing diversity of outdoor performance spaces.”

Monday, May 1, 2023

Concord Band Awarded Mass Cultural Council Grant

The Concord Band is pleased to announce the Mass Cultural Council has awarded the band with a Cultural Sector Recovery Grant. These funds will provide much needed relief from financial losses incurred over recent years due to the Covid-19 pandemic. We thank the Mass Cultural Council for their support.

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