We’re writing with the sad but inevitable news that the 2020 Madeline Island Chamber Music season is cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The health and safety of our students, faculty, and staff, as well as that of our supporters, audience members, and the Madeline Island and Bayfield community at large, is paramount in our decision.
Our artform of chamber music is not compatible with physical distancing. As a residential program that gathers students and faculty together in a shared community, we are not able to limit in-person interaction. And the weekly public performances we present violate current community gathering restrictions.
We mourn the loss of what would have been a wonderful season. After a particularly rigorous application process yielding applications from 35 states and 5 foreign countries, a talented student body was preparing to embark on their summer experience at Madeline Island. Our ensembles-in-residence—American String Quartet, Arianna String Quartet, Brooklyn Rider, Prairie Winds, and Shanghai Quartet—were polishing both newly-composed and familiar repertoire for their Clubhouse and Bayfield concerts. We were all looking forward to the many engaging musical opportunities that awaited us in June and July.
Along with our season cancellation, we have no choice but to postpone the June Dinner Concert fundraiser in Bayfield. Given the Dinner Concert’s overwhelming popularity and success in the last several years, this is especially painful to all of us who enjoy celebrating music and good food in the beautiful setting of Wild Rice Retreat.
Everyone is looking for silver linings these days. We offer this one: next summer is already being planned, and we already know it will be fantastic. Our 2021 ensembles-in-residence will be American String Quartet, Arianna String Quartet, Brooklyn Rider, Prairie Winds, and a string quartet new to our program: the Schumann Quartett from Germany. We believe that next summer’s music will sound even sweeter, and our gathering even more meaningful, after this long intermission.
Our work continues despite this cancellation, and we need your support to keep the music playing. Please consider making a contribution to help Madeline Island Chamber Music rebound stronger for 2021. You can easily donate online.
Madeline Island Chamber Music will keep in touch to give you a taste of what’s to come in 2021. Until then, please stay well and know how much we’ll miss you.
Susan T. Chandler
Director of Operations
Why did Madeline Island Chamber Music make this decision?
- Our artform of chamber music is not compatible with physical distancing.
- As a residential program that gathers students and faculty together in a shared community, we are not able to limit in-person interaction.
- The weekly public performances we present violate current community gathering restrictions.
How was this decision made?
After considering the nature of our program, reviewing government guidance and restrictions, and bearing in mind the ongoing uncertainties that surround this pandemic, our Board and staff concluded this was the only option.
Will student tuition be refunded?
Yes, we will refund deposits and tuition.
Students who paid by credit card will receive a refund on the credit card from which payment was made.
Students who paid by check will receive a check at the address provided on their application.
What about next season?
Our 2021 season begins on June 13, 2021. Applications to the string program will be due in February 2021; applications to the wind program will be due in April.