As concert halls across the country go dark due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Evanston Symphony Orchestra and other orchestras have given hope and solace to a quarantined public by making an unprecedented number of online performances and educational resources available free of charge. Evanston Symphony Orchestra is now featured in the League of American Orchestras’ new Symphony Spot (symphonyspot.org), a one-stop hub of orchestra livestreams, videos, and digital learning events from more than 100 members and friends of the League.
“I’m so delighted that this project is taking place.” commented Lawrence Eckerling, Music Director of the Evanston Symphony Orchestra. “The Covid-19 pandemic has clearly illuminated the human need for the arts perhaps like at no time before. As a music lover, I am one of millions who feel this way. But as a conductor that performs, I know that it is only a complete “performance” when a listener hears what I and the musicians have performed and the composer’s message is conveyed to an audience. It gives me and the wonderful musicians of the Evanston Symphony Orchestra great satisfaction to know that we are helping to provide music to listeners everywhere through Symphony Spot.”
“During this uncertain time, we’ve seen firsthand the value and connection orchestras bring to the public,” noted League President and CEO Jesse Rosen. “Orchestras of all sizes are continuing to serve their communities throughout this crisis, whether through streaming musicians’ live performances from home, by offering archival audio and video performances online, or by providing parents, students, and teachers with valuable educational resources. We’re proud to present this one-stop resource in order to highlight the inspirational music reverberating across the country.”
The League’s new Symphony Spot serves as a hub of member orchestras’ essential content, giving teachers, journalists, bloggers, and the general public a one-stop landing place to explore.
From a performance of Beethoven’s 9th Symphony by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra; the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra’s Bedtime with Bach video series; and the Boston Symphony Orchestra’s BSO Homeschool initiative featuring lesson plans, instrument demonstrations, and virtual lessons, to cutting-edge new music offered by American Composers Orchestra, there is content from more than 100 orchestras, venues, and soloists. And the site grows daily.
The Evanston Symphony Orchestra has posted five performances of recent concerts, including pieces by Brahms, Mendelssohn, and also Walker, the first African American composer to win a Pulitzer Prize for Music.