Minnesota’s Lake Area Music Festival curtailed, following positive COVID-19 tests

Posted on: August 11, 2021

“The delta variant has claimed its first Minnesota music festival,” writes Rob Hubbard in Tuesday’s (8/10) Star Tribune (Minneapolis, MN). “After presenting six concerts, the Lakes Area Music Festival in Brainerd canceled its remaining 14 performances through Aug. 22 when two of its artists—all of whom were said to have been vaccinated—tested positive for COVID-19. The festival draws about 200 classical music artists from around the United States…. The decision was made to cancel all remaining … orchestral concerts, chamber music, recitals and an opera. In announcing the decision via Facebook, the festival’s artistic and executive director, Scott Lykins, said it had already implemented a mask requirement for artists and audiences, conducted daily rapid testing for all artists, and had hired a full-time COVID compliance officer. The final concert was Friday night’s recital by baroque violinist Chloe Fedor, livestreamed without an audience from Brainerd’s new Gichi-ziibi Center for the Arts. Video recordings of that concert and three others from the festival’s opening week can be found at the festival’s YouTube page. The cancellation … scotched a very promising series of performances led by the festival’s new music director, German conductor Christian Reif… and a new vocal fellows program for opera singers.”