Choral Resources in a Time of Social Distancing

The worldwide COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in an outpouring of help, advice, and (online) music. Here we give some resources of particular interest to New England choruses, and link to resource pages from others with similar interests. We welcome your contributions to this list.

Impact Surveys

Local and Regional Assistance

  • Connecticut: The Arts Council of Greater New Haven resources page.
  • Maine: The Creative Portland Artist Relief Fund hopes to offer $500 stipends to help artists make ends meet, with the application process opening on March 30.
  • Massachusetts: Grant program suspended, may resume later in April: The Boston Singers' Relief Fund offers grants to New England-based singers who are in need, including a special emergency relief fund to compensate singers for income lost due to the pandemic.
  • Massachusetts: The Boston Artist Relief Fund will award grants of $500 and $1000 to individual artists who live in Boston whose creative practices and incomes are being adversely impacted by Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19).
  • Massachusetts: The Boston Music Maker Relief Fund was established by The Record Co. to provide financial relief to Boston area music makers experiencing lost income as the result of performance cancellations related to COVID-19. Small grants of up to $200 will be paid rapidly on a first come, first served basis to affected artists and groups.
  • Massachusetts: The Cambridge Community Foundation Artist Relief Fund provides one-time relief (up to $1,000) to arts organizations and artists who live, work, create, and/or perform in Cambridge.
  • Massachusetts: The Passim Emergency Artist Relief Fund (PEAR Fund) and the Keep Your Distance Festival: compensates for lost income for artists who have played a gig for Passim (or taught in the School of Music) in the last 10 years. Artists who receive a grant record a video for the Keep Your Distance Festival which is featured on the website.
  • New Hampshire: The Seacoast Relief Fund is for musicians in the greater Portsmouth N.H. area who have lost gigs, lost income, and lost opportunities. A board of local musicians will distribute the funds.
  • Vermont: The Vermont Community Foundation has established the VT COVID-19 Response Fund to support nonprofits that are particularly equipped to address community impacts of the spread of the novel coronavirus in Vermont.

Other Sources of Aid

  • The Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts is waiving service fees for artists with crises related to COVID-19
  • The Musicians Foundation provides grants to U.S. musicians in any genre in a time of acute need due to personal, medical, dental, or family crisis, natural disaster, or other emergency situation (they do not write checks directly to musicians).
  • Grammy Foundations's MusicCares Emergency Relief program
  • The Early Music America Relief Fund offers a check for $250 to those who are actively engaged in historical performance as a source of income (while funds last, on a first-come-first-served basis). EMA membership is not required.
  • The New Music Solidarity Fund (applications accepted beginning March 31)  is is a new initiative designed to help new/creative/improvised music freelancers whose livelihood has been threatened as a result of performances which have been canceled during the COVID-19 crisis. Grants of $500 are given on a first-come first-serve basis to everyone in need.

Resources from Organizations

Governments

Online Music

News/Information

Federal Government Aid (the "CARES Act")

On March 27, the President signed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act. Benefits include direct payments to most adults of $1,200 or less and $500 per child ($3,400 for a family of four); expanded unemployment insurance, including coverage for workers who are furloughed, gig workers, and freelancers (who had mostly not been eligible for benefits) and increasing payments by $600 per week for four months on top of what state unemployment programs pay; deferral of student loan payments through Sept. 30 for federally-owned loans; and increasing tax benefits for charitable donations both at the small level ($300) and high level (allowing deductions at a higher fraction of gross income).

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Effective date: 
Monday, March 23, 2020