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Keeping the Arts Alive During Shelter-In-Place

Recently, I have been looking through my planner, and realizing how many plans have unfortunately been canceled due to the current COVID-19 circumstances. I am not going to lie, it is disappointing, and I know we are all feeling this disappointment in some form or another. I had planned to attend several concerts and festivals with my friends, events that I had been saving money up for a while, as well as those I had planned as birthday celebrations with my friends. 

silhouette of people at a concert
Sebastian Ervi

The worst part is not that they have been canceled or postponed, everyone is experiencing some sort of change in plans (e.g.vacations, weddings, recitals, graduations, family reunions). I have found that what I am most disappointed in is the fact that I love music. In fact, music is a vital part of my routine and my mental health, so the excitement I had for these concerts felt like it was withering away when I came to the realization that one of my favorite activities, seeing live music, was put on pause for quite some time. I know that music still exists, even during shelter-in-place, and that there are plenty of events being canceled that carry more emotional weight than these concerts. But as a humanities major that routinely immerses herself in music and literature, the last thing I want to see is the arts slowly make an exit from the world stage. The arts: music, literature, dance, and theater matter to me; they give us voices and insight, and most importantly, give voices to those who have dreams and causes to advocate for. 

As a result of this mental dialogue, I have been dabbling with ways in which I can keep the arts alive while staying at home. First, I have been attempting to write poetry, and this is something I have never formally tried before. I can honestly say that I have found writing to be a creative outlet that I never knew I could unleash. I have also spent some of my extra free time looking for live music streams to attend.

poetry book & tea

The best part about this is that I have been experimenting with different music genres: jazz, classical, and opera. I have discovered that many institutions are offering free live stream performance resources so that I can bring the arts to my home, and now I have the best seat in the house. Now, I am hoping to experiment creatively through painting with my housemates. I have decided to bring the arts to my home and to those I live with in order to keep the arts alive because they seem to bring us joy. I encourage you all to do the same. Rather than worrying about the loss of experiences and memories like I was, I have decided to bring the arts to my own home as well as create new experiences by finding new activities and creative outlets for myself and my friends. I challenge you to do the same. 

Madi is currently a fourth-year student at UC Davis majoring in English and Poltical Science. She is currently a marketing intern for the Mondavi Center at UC Davis. Her favorite hobbies are reading, making Spotify playlists, and grabbing lattes with her girls! 
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