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Music Academy of the West Goes Online This Summer

April 21, 2020

Not quite a cancellation, but it’s not good news either. The Music Academy of the West announced on April 20 that the first half of its summer school and festival, June 15 – July 10, will happen online. Pandemic permitting, teaching will be in-person and events will be public for the second half of the season, July 13 – Aug. 8.

For students, this is the inevitable extension of an already altered school year, for professionals, another canceled performance or online engagement. The Music Academy of the West hosts more than 100 student fellows in Santa Barbara every summer — orchestral musicians, singers, and pianists — and its faculty comes from conservatories and ensembles across the country, including current and former San Francisco Symphony and Los Angeles Philharmonic members. The combination of travel and large crowds means that summer festivals are having to drastically adapt their usual programs.

The Music Academy’s Remote Learning Institute will still offer weekly lessons and classes for fellows, as well as new and past performances that audiences can stream at home. More details about the second half of the summer — whether the festival goes in-person — will be announced by May 15.

Peter Feher is an editor at SFCV. He can be reached at [email protected].