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Community Updates Related to COVID-19

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Plan for Fall 2020

Over the course of the past several months, our community has been involved in a process of reimagining our programming with the goal of continuing to connect through the arts and deliver excellent educational experiences in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. As we look ahead to the new concert season and school year at Kaufman Music Center, health and safety will remain our top priority. To that end, we plan to begin the fall with digital performances and online instruction, phasing in limited in-person events, classes, lessons and rehearsals as possible. Given the ongoing changes in the COVID-19 situation, it may be necessary for us to flex between online and in-person formats throughout the season. We are closely monitoring city, state and federal guidelines and recommendations. This outline of our fall plan is the result of that information, as well as input gathered from students, families, staff, faculty, audiences, supporters, medical experts and peer institutions. More detailed information for every program will soon follow to each appropriate group.

Lucy Moses School

  • Young People’s Division and Adult Division instruction begins online for the fall semester on September 13.  Class details and online registration are available HERE.
  • We anticipate that a limited amount of in-person offerings will begin starting October 18.
  • A larger number of in-person offerings will begin in January 2021, if possible.
  • More detailed information will soon be sent to LMS students and families from the LMS staff.

Special Music School

  • The entire K-12 music program will be delivered online by Kaufman Music Center. The rest of the curriculum will be delivered in a hybrid model by the NYC Department of Education
  • Stay tuned for more information from Principal Katie Banucci-Smith as it becomes available.
  • We anticipate that a limited amount of in-person music program activity will be phased in as the fall semester progresses.

Face the Music

  • All instruction will be online during the fall cycle, which begins on September 27.
  • We anticipate that in-person activity will resume in early 2021.
  • The Face the Music team will be in touch with more information for all students and families.

Merkin Hall

  • Merkin Hall is open for recording sessions, video concert recordings and livestreams, with social distancing and all required health regulations in place. Find out more about presenting your performance at Merkin Hall HERE.
  • Kaufman Music Center presentations will be broadcast online from Merkin Hall. Please see our website for dates and ticket information.
  • Audience attendance in person will be phased in as New York State regulations allow. No in-person audiences are currently permitted in Merkin Hall.

At Kaufman Music Center it is our highest priority to ensure that all those who choose to perform, learn, visit, or work within our facility do so as safely as possible. As we transition into in-person classes in the fall, please rest assured that we are taking all the necessary and recommended precautions during this unprecedented time of the COVID-19 pandemic. The following outlines the actions we are implementing based on CDC, New York State and the City of New York guidelines and recommendations.

  • Everyone who enters the building will have their temperature taken at the door with a touchless thermometer and will be required to fill out a COVID-19 Exposure Form.
  • Masks or facial coverings must be worn at all times while in the building.
  • Proper social distancing of 6 feet (2 meters) must be maintained.
  • Other measures include scheduling 30-minute breaks between classes to allow for air exchange, shortening class lengths, and usage of only our large rooms.
  • Due to the small number of in-person class offerings, there will be a limited number of people in the building and on each floor.
  • There will be limits to the number of people in each of the elevators, and specific traffic patterns for staircase use.

Read previous community updates.


Kaufman Music Center needs your help to continue transforming lives through music! We’re facing significant financial challenges as a result of COVID-19. Due to public safety concerns, the remainder of our 2019-20 Merkin Hall season was suspended, and we've moved lessons and music, dance and theater classes online for almost 3,000 students. If you’re searching for a way to help our musical home during this crisis, this is your opportunity!

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