Through the fog of this downcast year we are spending this holiday season focusing on its silver linings and look forward to the year and years ahead of us with optimism and renewed energy and excitement. For what lies at the heart of Swallow Hill is an amazing community that has come out (or online) in droves to support our work putting together teachers with students and performing artists with audiences. It is through this music community that we get to celebrate our own humanity.
And because of the amazing generosity and support of our members, donors, volunteers, and partner organizations, Swallow Hill is on solid financial ground and 2021 is poised to be a year of rebuilding and growth.
A silver lining was found in the creation of our online music school which has taken off – what started 6 months ago with a dedicated crew of teachers has now taken off with more than 500 students from 20 states and Canada to boot (I think it’s fair to say we’re now an international music school!). We have nearly 40 teachers back in our virtual classrooms and we’re anticipating double digit growth in each of our six sessions spanning 2021.
Another silver lining revealed itself through our efforts producing more than 170 live stream concerts through Swallow Hill Live – We presented artists from 29 states and as far away as New Brunswick, Australia, Ireland, and British Columbia. Our shows were viewed by more than 125,000 virtual audience members who collectively contributed more than $45,000 (Proceeds that were split with these amazing artists).
And along the way we’ve learned a ton about what works and what doesn’t work in our virtual world and one thing we know is that our virtual programming – online classes and live streaming concerts out of our own theaters – will continue to be a part of Swallow Hill’s offerings as far into the future as our eyes can see.
And now with just a few days left in this year – put a bow on it, leave it behind, shut and lock the door on it and throw away the key – If Paul Simon could find 50 ways to leave his lover, we can just as easily find as many ways to kick this year to the curb.
So ring in the New Year with the joy of music and get ready for a bright new 2021. We can’t wait to see you on-line and, when it’s safe to do so, back in-person – Fingers crossed for an efficient distribution of Vaccine.
Happy Holidays and a Very Happy New Year filled with love and joy.
Stay safe and healthy and make good choices!
CEO, Swallow Hill Music