I don’t have to tell you about the immense toll the COVID-19 pandemic is having on our industry. In light of so many organizations going dark for an undetermined length of time, the question arises as to how to keep in touch with patrons through this uncertain time.
I have a few ideas to share with you:
- Release recordings of performances for people to watch from home. Whether it is an entire opera, or selections from a recent concert, you can keep connected whilst also providing something to break up the monotony of being at home.
- Provide activities that can be done at home. If you are a museum, what art activities (for kids and adults) can you share via email and social media? For performing arts orgs, there is a wealth of how-to and educational videos on YouTube. I rarely recommend Pinterest for arts organizations, but this might be a time to set up an account and create boards where you can aggregate this content.
- Take patrons on behind-the-scenes tours. If you are a museum or your organization has it’s own facilities (whether it is a theater or simply a costume shop), why not create a series of simple videos or even a livestream that that takes patrons on a tour?
- Publish a reading list of books for children and adults. There are tons of books for all ages that are about the arts. In addition to more cerebral nonfiction books for super fans, don’t forget about entertaining fiction like The Remarkable Farkle McBride and Fancy Nancy At The Museum for kids or Bel Canto and Captain Corelli’s Mandolin for adults.
I hope these give you a little inspiration for what your organization can do to provide resources and entertainment for your patrons.