December is traditionally a time for us to reflect and give generously to those in need. This year, thinking back, 2020 seems longer than 12 months. It has challenged us to rethink how we live both economically and culturally. Like everyone, the local arts community has been negatively affected by an uncertain future reflected in canceled concerts, unseen plays, interrupted lessons, and a loss of much-needed individual and organizational income.
It is important to acknowledge that the pandemic has hit some of us harder than others. It is the new reality that generosity and compassion are needed in every aspect of our lives. However, the arts community’s closures left all of us, artists and patrons, feeling empty and lost. As quickly as the arts organizations shut down in-person offerings, the Fairfax arts community started to do what they do best, create. Despite facing financial losses and technology challenges, our arts community transitioned to provide online programming and content to help ease our hearts and engage our minds as we navigate this uncharted territory.
To you, this transformation may have looked easy, but for those behind the scenes, it continues to be a struggle for survival. The high quality of art in Fairfax hasn’t changed, but how they deliver their art content to you has, and this new challenge is adding financial costs as revenue is decreasing.
This holiday season, more than ever, how we spend our funds will impact the financial and creative survival of artists and arts organizations in Fairfax. The arts opportunity available to us in a post-COVID world depends on what we choose to support today. How we can help can take many different forms.
Direct message an artist you admire or make a financial donation to an arts organization. Use your social media power and spread the word about the arts in Fairfax County. Consider how the arts have sustained us through the pandemic and think about how you can help them be there for us after this is over. The arts are a gift for the entire community. Now is the time to share your love for the arts with a favorite performance online or explore new offerings.
ArtsFairfax wishes you a safe and healthy holiday season and encourages you to support the arts.
Area Students Present A Christmas Carol
NextStopTheatre presents “A Christmas Carol” as part of their beloved holiday tradition of bringing family entertainment to our community. Artistic Director Evan Hoffman safely brought together more than 60 local students to create an online version of Charles Dickens’ holiday story. Streaming now, NextStop is offering free admission, but is encouraging patrons to donated to their NextStop NOWfund. Visit nextstoptheatre.org to enjoy the show.
Fee Fi Fa La La Holiday Virtual Reading and Sing Along
The City of Fairfax Theatre Company presents the story of a young girl not well-accepted by her peers in “Fee Fi Fa La La.” The story explores modern day social problems and learning to appreciate others and is filled with important messages and Christmas-themed puns. The performance and sing along will be streamed at www.fairfaxcitytheatre.org/ on December 18 at 7 pm.
Wolf Trap Holiday Sing-A-Long From Home
Join long time holiday fans for Wolf Trap’s annual “Holiday Sing-A-Long From Home.” This special presentation will allow revelers to gather in their homes to listen and sign with “The President’s Own” United States Marine Band on December 19 at 4pm. Visit wolf trap.org to stream live.
Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker
The Fairfax Symphony Orchestra and the Fairfax Ballet partnered with Fairfax County Government Television Channel 16 to present Tchaikovsky’s “The Nutcracker” for the enjoyment of the community. Filmed at George Mason University’s Center for the Arts, the video may be enjoyed on Channel 16 or on YouTube at Fairfax Symphony presents The Nutcracker 2019.
ENOUGH: Plays to End Gun Violence Project
1st Stage presents a virtual reading of seven plays created through the ENOUGH: Plays to End Gun Violence project on December 14 at 7:30pm. A discussion immediately follows with Josh Horowitz, Executive Director of the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence and Sean Perryman, former President of the Fairfax County NAACP and candidate for Lt. Governor of Virginia. The event is free, but registration is required at 1ststagetysons.org.