COVID-19 & The Project

@ 6:34 pm

In April, 2020, when the quarantine began, the Project was days away from premiering two productions (one Playmaking and one Dancemaking).

Smoke & Mirrors, The Tricky Plays. Postponed
With the Flow, Dancemaking. Postponed

The shutdown required canceling all in-person programming, and closing the office. As the days became weeks, (which became months, so far) the Project was fortunate to qualify for the PPP relief, which allowed us to retain our entire staff through the end of fiscal year 2019-2020.

The staff got to work, adapting our programming to a virtual environment. This has included on-line versions of Playmaking, Radiomaking, Teen Ensemble, Wordplay, Songmaking, Playback – as well as new programming like Artmaking, Cooking, Movement and more.

The need to keep socially distant required shifting our annual gala (which normally brings in about 20% of our annual income), from an in-person event to our first ever on-line gala– honoring our longtime, dedicate volunteers Crystal Dickinson & Brandon Dirden, in the aptly name GAME CHANGERS.

The staff worked diligently to collaborate with adult artists to come up with music videos as the entertainment portion, with introductory remarks by Lewis Black and Board Co-Chairs Cathy Dantchik & Louis Friedman. The music videos are intro’d by Project pals Rose Byrne & Bobby Cannavale.

Click HERE to see the music videos

Since July 1, the impacts of the quarantine have continued to ripple through the Project, requiring two lay-offs and an across-the-board 10% reduction in salary for remaining staff. The length of this disruption of our in-person programming remains unclear, but being an arts & culture organization, we know that we will not begin to get back to having people in our space until the final phases of re-opening. This impact is significant, and we have joined efforts like @PPPCoalition and Be An #ArtsHero to try to raise awareness of the need we feel and that we see all across the entertainment industry.

If you want to write your senator CLICK HERE

But the Project keeps innovating with its virtual programming, and has created four zoom productions of new plays created by the young members alongside their adult volunteer partners, and other arts education opportunities in Audio Journalism, Drawing, Poetry/Spoken Word Performance and more.

THE 52ND STREET PROJECT 789 10th Avenue New York, NY 10019 | 212.333.5252
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