Dear SOGO community:

We hope this message finds you well, and that you have been able to find some enjoyment close to home this summer!

As you can imagine, all of us on the SOGO staff have been keeping up with the national, statewide, and local conversations surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic. Our number one priority is the health and safety of our students, staff, and families. We are looking at how we can best offer a meaningful experience without compromising health and safety. With this in mind, we are officially announcing that all of our programming will be virtual, through at least this coming December.

We will have our detailed plans finalized by late August, but in the meantime, we wanted to share some of the principles guiding our decision-making. Virtual programming:

  1. is the only guaranteed way to eliminate the risk of spreading the virus by way of SOGO activities.
  2. ensures that SOGO can continue many of our normal activities – such as sectionals, rehearsals, theory, and music history – uninterrupted, regardless of fluctuating national, state, or local restrictions on in-person gatherings.
  3. allows SOGO to offer additional opportunities for students that we’ve never been able to offer before, including lessons, master classes, and guest speakers from around the state and country.

A few weeks ago, we hosted a virtual incarnation of SOGO Summer Music. We received lots of positive feedback from participants, and also learned some important lessons that will better inform our programming for the Fall. We know you will have important questions between now and then. We want to address a few of those concerns now:

  1. Our virtual programming will continue through at least December 2020. We will re-evaluate and make decisions about the remainder of the 2020-21 season at that time.
  2. Virtual activities will fall within the general parameters of Sunday afternoons, although the exact start and end times may vary somewhat from our normal rehearsal schedule.
  3. We will calculate tuition for our virtual Fall differently than we do for a typical season. More information about this will be forthcoming.
  4. Group placements based on May and June auditions will remain valid through the entire 2020-21 season. Our virtual programming will be tailored to the level of each orchestra, and when we are able to resume in-person music-making, students will play in the orchestra they were placed in at their audition. We are always welcoming new members to SOGO. Visit our website for the next upcoming audition date.

We hope that this gives you a general idea of what to expect from SOGO during this unique time. Much more information will come in late August. Again, your (and our) health and safety are of the utmost importance to us, and we take that responsibility very seriously.

Take care, stay well, and we’ll talk to you soon.

Cameron May, Music Director
Greg Allison, Artistic Director
Krina Allison, Executive Director