Celebrating Resilience — Guest Blog: The Sembrich
e didn't want to usher in 2021 without looking back on the remarkable ingenuity of our local business community in 2020.
During 2020, we all had to adapt. Local businesses and organizations had to learn new technology, rethink marketing strategies, navigate the PPP application process, and understand and implement new safety and sanitation protocols.
It was a year filled with challenges and ingenuity, hardships and courage, uncertainty and collaboration.
We are grateful for our business community’s ability to come together. In 2020, we truly saw how our economy is interconnected.
We asked our members to submit guest blog posts about how they had to rethink their businesses and organizations and adapt to the constant changes 2020 brought.
The following is a guest blog post submitted by The Sembrich:
What a year 2020 has been! The team at The Sembrich is thankful for everyone’s support, feedback, and participation, both in-person and virtually.
For those unfamiliar with The Sembrich, we are a museum and venue dedicated to opera and classical music, housed in the teaching studio of the late Metropolitan Opera soprano Marcella Sembrich (1858-1935). The studio was originally built to house summer lessons with her students from The Juilliard School and the Curtis Institute of Music. You can learn more about our history here.
The studio was opened to the public following her passing in 1935. Each summer, The Sembrich presents an annual festival including live concerts, films, children’s programming, and lectures featuring world-class musicians and scholars. Events include a variety of music ranging from classical to contemporary as well as vocal and instrumental.
Due the intimate nature of the historic Sembrich Studio, we were forced to close our buildings to visitors and focus on creating digital programming that could be viewed from the comfort and safety of your homes.
The 20/20: Virtual Visionaries summer festival, a new venture into the digital world for The Sembrich, featured nine unique multimedia presentations on a selection of visionary musicians. One of the highlights of the season was “Quiet City: A Reverie for New York in the Time of COVID-19,” featuring a new recording of Aaron Copland’s iconic Quiet City and a new essay by critic and author Thomas Larson. Other musicians highlighted were Marcella Sembrich, Percy Grainger, Enrico Caruso, Erik Satie, Philip Glass, Igor Stravinsky, and more!
Another first for The Sembrich was the launch of The Thatcher Photos digital exhibition. This four-exhibit series features photos of Marcella Sembrich, her students, and her Bay View estate taken by Lake George Photographer Fred Thatcher. Exhibits offer tours of the original estate and explore Sembrich’s time in Bolton Landing from 1922-1934.
After getting safety protocols in place, The Sembrich grounds were opened to visitors for outdoor recreation from June through Columbus Day! It was a pleasure to welcome guests both new and familiar to the grounds! To enhance the outdoor experience, The Sembrich’s digital programs and exhibits were presented in mobile-friendly formats, allowing visitors to experience the evolution of the studio and grounds over the last century.
Finally, in an effort to raise awareness of our incredible local arts community, we launched an online gift shop carrying unique and one of a kind works by regional artisans. In addition to moving sales to the online world, we offer free contactless curbside pickup to save local customers on shipping, while staying safe and supporting local artists as well as music and education programs at The Sembrich.
We are continually grateful for our wonderful community both locally and globally, and in-person and virtually. We appreciate the tremendous support we have received and look forward to experiencing more music, history, and nature at The Sembrich in 2021!
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