One of the many industries hit particularly hard by the realities of COVID-19 is the gigging music economy. With effectively every public event in the Bay Area cancelled, musicians are turning to livestreaming their concerts as an alternative way to stay connected to their fans & make ends meet. Two Bay Area music professionals Jules Indelicato and Liliana Urbain are taking it one step further, creating an online space that features a consistent calendar of performances that also allows viewers to directly support artists without being limited to one particular streaming platform.
Thus was born The Show Must Go On, with its first episode airing live on Wednesday, March 18 at 7pm PST via Facebook and Twitch. The format is this: each episode will feature unique local performers, from musicians to puppeteers to burlesque dancers. An emcee will intersperse questions between performances, including ones asked by the livestream audience.
The collective launch party features Lydia Violet, Sam Chase, Dave of Shadow Circus Creature Theater, with Liliana emceeing. The performers will all be connecting with one another remotely in accordance with San Francisco’s shelter-in-place ordinance, and encourage audience members to avoid large gatherings themselves. You can support the stream by donating to Paypal.
“Right now, the media is a constant onslaught of fear and isolation and the repercussions are slamming artists,” says co-founder Liliana Urbain. “We want to redirect the conversation to remind people that even if we can’t be in the same space, we are still a community.”
The Show Must Go On has has also begun to cultivate a user-submitted livestreaming concert calendar, where any performer can upload the details of their upcoming event onto a shared concert spreadsheet.
Ultimately, this is all about staying connected with one another through the joy of live performance, and lifting up those who have no ‘traditional’ way to work from home. And on that note, let’s do our best to support all the service industry workers, homeless, and other vulnerable groups during this difficult time. If you’re feeling isolated, disconcerted, or disconnected — pull up a chair. The Show Must Go On.