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AoA reflects on decision to host events in October | Local News

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After canceling its indoor events this month due to the recent spike in COVID-19 cases, Arts of the Albemarle will soon decide whether its October events will continue.

AoA director Laurie Edwards said last week that the board of directors of regional arts groups will decide in mid-September to organize AoA cultural and entertainment events as scheduled or to postpone them until later. . One October event, the opera, Alice !, has already moved to January, she said.

But a number of other October events, such as a salsa concert scheduled for October 10 at Mariners Wharf Park and Rhythm & Brews scheduled for October 23 on the portico of the Museum of the Albemarle, are outdoor events, this which makes them safer, Edwards said.

AoA is also considering adjustments to several indoor events that could allow them to be held. For example, AoA may limit attendance but add more screenings for its annual Manhattan Short Film Festival scheduled for Oct. 1-3, Edwards said.

Other precautions are planned.

For our Halloween Spooktacular kids, October 30-31, make sure everyone is masked and probably manage attendance in groups of 20 so everyone can be as safe as possible, she said.

AoA also plans to move performances of Little Mermaid Jr. by The Center Players, its youth theater group, from November to February, Edwards said. To ensure social distancing, AoA also plans to change the way the young performers in the cast rehearse for the show.

We don’t feel safe with 30 kids singing around a piano right now, Edwards said. We will work in small groups, which will greatly lengthen the rehearsal period. … The good thing is that we can really focus on helping the kids play, dance and sing.

Sally Bruderle, chair of the AoAs board of directors, said the board made the decision on August 24 to close the Maguire theater during the month of September, canceling many events and the coup d ‘ sending of its performing arts season.

Several weeks ago, the AoA board and staff expressed concern about the spread of COVID in the community, she explained in an email. We started discussing moving most of our events outside and subsequently found that many of our local health professionals and public health officials were very concerned about the number of new cases. It appeared that the community spread was reaching a serious level.

Edwards said AoA’s current plan is to hold events postponed from September to spring.

I think we made some tough decisions at AoA, but all for the safety of our community, she said, noting that each of the postponed events would have brought several hundred people to the AoAs Maguire Theater. With the increase in COVID cases in areas, we felt it would be best for the safety of our members, staff and community to postpone events until it was safer.

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