How freelance classical musicians in Dallas-Fort Worth are managing during shutdown

Posted on: April 8, 2020

“Among arts professionals affected by the COVID-19 cancellations, freelance classical musicians—who rely on performances as their primary source of income—have been hit particularly hard,” writes Tim Diovanni in Monday’s (4/6) Dallas Morning News. “Brian Brown, a French hornist who performs for the Dallas Opera and subs for the Dallas and Fort Worth symphonies, began driving for DoorDash last week. He also teaches video lessons and is taking online coding classes…. In addition to hardships experienced by musicians, organizations in the region are reeling. This includes not just the Dallas Symphony and Dallas Opera, but also small and mid-sized groups…. On a national level, the $2 trillion relief bill, signed into law on March 27, has provided several opportunities for independent contractors. Self-employed musicians now have access to expanded unemployment benefits and can apply for economic injury disaster loans as well as paycheck protection program loans. ‘This is just the beginning,’ says Heather Noonan, vice president for advocacy at the League of American Orchestras. ‘The relief passed by Congress was meant to be a short-term, emergency patch to help people stay afloat. We know this will not be enough to keep self-employed workers going for months to come.’ ” For information from the League of American Orchestras about the federal CARES act and orchestras, click here.