June 16, 2020
EAR TAXI FESTIVAL RESPONSE TO THE CRISES OF OUR CURRENT TIMES
As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, Ear Taxi Festival, a presentation of New Music Chicago, is being postponed to October 2021. The last six weeks of planning the festival have been an atypical double-process. The leadership team has been diligently working towards the October 2020 festival; we have been finalizing venues, going through proposals, solidifying PR and marketing, working with graphic designers, crafting messaging, engaging in dialogues with artists. At the same time, we have been examining the ever-increasing likelihood that we would have to postpone the festival. After careful consultation with our partners, it has become clear that it is not feasible to hold the festival as scheduled, given the multiple uncertainties we face.
Three issues have brought us to this decision:
- The safety of all involved as the COVID-19 pandemic remains a public health concern.
- Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker’s five-phased mandate that requires that all large events, including festivals, be postponed until the final phase (“Phase 5 – Illinois Restored”) is reached. This would require that a vaccine or highly effective treatment for COVID-19 be made widely available to the public.
- The opportunity to address the pervasive cultural uneasiness around mass gatherings and to consider further integrated paradigms for the concert experience, including hybrid live-performance/live-streaming and interactive possibilities.
The theme for Ear Taxi Festival will be: HEAR CHICAGO
HEAR CHICAGO is a call to engage with the vast multiplicity of styles and traditions that constitutes Chicago’s expansive musical identity in the 21st century. It expresses our firm belief in the vitality of Chicago’s BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) musicians as a significant part of the city’s complex history. As our society takes steps to heal from the multiple tragedies it is currently experiencing, as well as its centuries-long legacy of injustice, inequity, colonialism, and violence, it is most importantly an invitation to challenge, collaborate, and change together as artists and listeners. We remain committed to doing the steadfast work necessary to progress towards a just society.
We hope that you will look forward with us to Ear Taxi Festival 2021 when, hopefully, we will all make music in person and together again. Please stay tuned for future updates as we move forward, and do not hesitate to reach out to us with any questions you may have.