COVID-19 AND HOW TO SUPPORT THE ARTS at Indiana Repertory Theatre
Less than a week ago I saw Murder on the Orient Express at the Indiana Repertory Theatre. The set was opulent and the murder was crackling with tension and humor... and no one else will get to see it. Since that night the IRT, along with almost every arts organization in the city, has decided to cancel the rest of its shows through the Spring. There are directors, set designers, and actors who have poured their hearts into these productions that the public will never see. It's heartbreaking. The city is going dark in the hope that we can stop the rapid spread of virus. It's a hard choice, but one that is incredibly important for the safety of the public.That being said, the arts community, restaurants, and small businesses in our city are facing a very tough time. As people practice social distancing they are not attending events, eating out, or shopping, but that doesn't mean you can't support those places! You can donate directly to the theatres. Check their websites to see the easiest way. If you've already purchased a ticket to a show that's been cancelled, you can donate it back to the theatre instead of asking for a refund. or you can ask if they'll apply it to a future show. For restaurants, consider buying e-gifcards to use when they reopen. For local breweries, many are offering carry out of their products. Books & Brews is even offering to deliver the beer to your house! Indianapolis Monthly has created a huge list of ways you can support local restaurants. There's even a list of restaurant employees that you can Venmo directly to help them while they try to make ends meet without tips. For amazing bookstores like Indy Reads Books, you can buy audiobooks through Libro.fm, which works just like Audible, but the proceeds benefit your local bookstore! In the end, the outpouring of support that people are showing for Indy should encourage us all. This is a strange time, one where we need to connect more than ever. We can do that in a million ways and these are just a few to get you started.