Words by Penny Neef
Photo courtesy of the Virginia Arts Festival
There are so many feelings churning around my head. You too? I am grateful for the health of my loved ones and the basic necessities of life. I am happy that cell towers and WiFi are working. I am optimistic that most people will step up to the plate and do the right thing. I am hopeful that our leaders will lead.
I’ve got those “other” feelings churning around up there too, but I’m trying to push them right out of my head and wash them right out of my hair by concentrating on the items in paragraph one. Let’s all stick to paragraph one.
Many events and performances have been cancelled or postponed. Most venues for the arts have closed down. In fact, SevenVenues, Norfolk’s public assembly buildings including Chrysler Hall, Scope Arena and the Attucks Theatre have all temporarily shut the doors. It made me realize what a vibrant arts community we have. If you lived in Supai, Arizona, your choices would be limited. The 208 residents of Supai have to make their own entertainment and art. That’s going to be our new normal for a while.
This is the time of year I look forward to Virginia Arts Festival. Each spring, there are hundreds of performances by artists from around the world in venues both big and small. At the same time, VAF hosts educational outreach opportunities throughout Hampton Roads for students of all ages. Rob Cross and his amazing team of people at VAF spend the entire year curating the events and performers. Bus-loads of people come from outside our area for the Virginia International Tattoo, one of the premier events of VAF. This year, let’s hope that we will be able to emerge from our social isolation to enjoy some of the scheduled performances for later this spring.
Virginia Arts Festival is working hard to postpone and reschedule events that were scheduled for March, April and May. Some have been rescheduled for next year’s VAF, some rescheduled for this fall, and some have had to be cancelled. Here is a partial list of postponements and cancellations. For a complete list, go to their message.
North Shore Point Downtown
James Mc Murtry – POSTPONED to September 18 in VAF Outdoor Courtyard
Originally scheduled for March 26
Attucks Jazz Club
Stephanie Nakasian, vocalist – POSTPONED to October 3
Originally scheduled for April 4
Sing-a-long to Sound of Music – POSTPONED – date to be announced
Originally scheduled for April 25
Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo – POSTPONED – date to be announced
Sandler Center for Performing Arts
Originally scheduled for April 29
Virginia International Tattoo – CANCELED
Originally scheduled for April 30 – May 3
Norfolk NATO Festival – CANCELED
Originally scheduled for April 30 – May 2
The Virginia Arts Festival is offering several options for ticket exchanges and refunds. Click here for all the details.
In the meantime, let’s hunker down, take care of ourselves and our loved ones. If you can, reach out and help your neighbors in need. Enjoy the many options of performing and visual arts online. Try and make your own art. Find that guitar that’s been stowed in the closet. Pull out those paintbrushes or just pick up a pencil. Art soothes the soul. We could all use a little soothing about now.