During pandemic, Virginia Symphony musicians move to social media, work with students

Posted on: June 1, 2020

“While people hope for a return to normal after COVID-19, musicians dream of a return to the stage,” writes Ashley Smith on Friday (5/29) at WVEC TV (Hampton, VA). “ ‘What we do day in and day out is something very personal, but it’s also something that we’re sharing constantly with our communities and with our audiences,’ said Tanner Antonetti, a trombonist with the Norfolk-based Virginia Symphony Orchestra. The nonprofit is preparing to celebrate its 100th anniversary in the coming months, but had to cancel or postpone many events … because of coronavirus…. The sounds of the symphony can still be heard. Musicians are performing for audiences using social media, and connecting with students through video calls. The organization also launched a virtual Music Learning Lab, providing free access to educational and enrichment programming. ‘We just wanted to be able to kind of fill that void that was suddenly created when we couldn’t reach the students that we see week to week in different public schools, or from the concert stage,’ said Antonetti. … ‘As we’re dealing with these circumstances, the Virginia Symphony is seeing it as an opportunity to find new ways to engage not only with students, but with the community.’ ”