Executive Director Adam Zanolini and Angel Bat Dawid. Photo: Lia Kohl

The COVID-19 global pandemic has affected us all in countless ways, even if we have not fallen ill. For artists, performers, and organizers, it has required an ethic of social distancing that not only makes it very difficult to perform but also directly undermines a central tenet of our mission, which is that it is inherently good and healing for people to gather together to share art. If you’re like me, it can be hard to cope with that!

It made me want to share a little good news. Even as this crisis began to shut down life in the United States, a delegation from Elastic Arts was building a creative bridge to Mexico City, supported by the MacArthur Foundation’s International Connections Fund, and achieved in collaboration with our partners Festival Aural, Harmonipan, the No Idea Festival, the Centro Cultural de España de Mexico, and Casa Niza. Seven Chicagoans and eight Chilangos spent four days realizing our common imperative for unfettered creative exploration, learning to improvise together, and generating some of the most exciting music of our lives. You can read about the project here: http://harmonipan.com/elasticarts/  We’ll be streaming some particularly healing performances from that festival in the coming weeks and months, so stay tuned! Thank you to our new dear friends at RhizomesFilms for the photos below, and for the videos to come.

Rest assured. This virus will not stop us! Elastic Arts music, performance, and art continues and will continue! The determination and vitality of spirit that this organization represents is more important now than ever, and with the support of our community, our partners, audiences, artists, leaders and friends, we will overcome these challenges one by one until we can come together again and celebrate the triumph of fearless creation in the urgent moments of our time.
– Adam Zanolini, PhD, Executive Director

International Connections : An Improvised Music Exchange Between Mexico City and Chicago

Pictured: Cristal Sabbagh’s Freedom From & Freedom To Series. Photo by Liina Raud.

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COVID-19 is changing the world and everyone’s life in it. But while we Chicagoans, along with other citizens of the world, practice social distancing for the sake of everyone’s safety, Elastic Arts remains committed to social connecting through music and art for the sake of everyone’s wholeness.

Like all cultural institutions and public spaces, Elastic Arts is closed and will remain so until it is safe again to host concerts, performances, and openings. This is a challenge for the organization and the performers. Music, dance, and art sustain us. The act of sharing creatively and exploring together is core to our humanity. For that reason, Elastic Arts is committed to again welcoming artists and audiences of all kinds to experiment, express, revel, and celebrate, and we hope you will be a part of that future.

COVID-19 brings financial hardship to Elastic Arts and the performers who earn vital income from shows. Will you consider helping the organization and artists  to survive these difficult times and look to a bright and flourishing future of art and music in Chicago? Elastic Arts is asking you and the entire community of music/art/dance lovers to invest today in tomorrow. We are creating the Resilient Expression Fund to help support our vibrant creative community in a time of need. 50% of the funds will directly support artists and performers who have lost critical income, including those with cancelled performances, and 50% will support Elastic Arts during this public health crisis. Will you join us?

The loss, fear, and isolation of COVID-19 are real, but so are the strength and compassion we demonstrate as we respond to these challenges. Elastic Arts embodies the values of human connection, creative exploration, and freedom. These values are needed more right now than ever before. Please invest in the future of Chicago music, art, and performance by donating today. 

Make a contribution HERE

2018 Elastic Achievement Awardee Avreeayl Ra with Executive Director Adam Zanolini. Photo by Julia Dratel.