In a press release Caffe Lena’s Executive Director Sarah Craig explains their plan:
“We’re taking it in baby steps, starting with 25% capacity. Live performance venues were the first to shut down, and they’re the last to reopen. It’s essential for the future of music that we work out a way to open stages safely. Our goal is to meet and surpass the NYS Health Department guidelines.”
The venue’s first regular concert will take place on July 14 with ensemble members from the New York City Ballet. Serving as an alternative opening night due to the cancellation of their Saratoga Performing Arts Center performance, the five musicians will be able to play for 12 parties as well as hundreds that will be tuning in via an online stream. In compliance with social distancing, guidelines seating will be in groups of two to four with no individual tickets being offered at this time.
When New York hit pause in March Caffe Lena was forced to close its doors to the public. Due to designation as an essential business for live broadcasting use, the seats remained empty but thousands watched via the venue’s Youtube channel, concerts taking place on Lena’s stage.
“Recognizing that many of our patrons are not in a position to return to public gatherings, we’re becoming a kind of hybrid live-stream and live-audience venue,” explained Craig. “From now on, our headline concerts will be available in real time via Vimeo for a small fee, and our community programs and shows featuring local amateur talent will be streamed on YouTube for free.”
July 14 – Franz Schubert’s Trout Quintet
July 15 – Bluegrass Night with High Peaks Bluegrass Band
July 17 & 18 – Aztec Two-Step
July 19 – Erin Harpe Country Blues Duo