The lockdown brought by the COVID-19 pandemic drastically affected the lives of the musicians globally. There were cancellations of music festivals, postponements of international tours, and temporary closures of concert halls. Despite this challenging situation, Tiffany Ash believes that it was incredible when musicians started conducting virtual concerts on online platforms, including Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube. But how are musicians holding up during these times?
Musicians who play in orchestras and symphonies all across the United States of America have their lives upended in many ways, which their communities are unaware of. Many hoped for a quick and temporary lockdown, but it soon turned into a stay-at-home order 5with no end in sight, even now that several months passed. There were cancellations of entire concert seasons, and it forced musicians out of their jobs indefinitely.
Tiffany Ash believes that musicians worldwide are longing now, more than ever, to be a part of an ensemble again. They do not only play instruments. These artists also listen and feel. They rely on the conductor and the community of instrumentalists that surrounds them.
Tiffany Ash also believes that playing for an audience gives a different feeling of satisfaction for orchestra musicians. Thankfully, audiences in online platforms are always interested in watching and listening to talented musicians in an ensemble. Virtual concerts are going viral on Facebook, instilling a sense of hope in musicians that they would still find fulfillment during the quarantine.
Many orchestra musicians now rely on digital platforms and technologies to reach their audiences. Some play on radio shows, video-capture plays, and their genres range from classic to concert-like musicals. Tiffany Ash believes that finding ways to engage with an audience is now the evolution of performing arts. It is crucial to rebuild the performing arts sector by keeping engagements with audiences. And reaching out to younger patrons is the key for orchestra musicians to stay afloat.