COVID-19 Update: March 12

Mar 12, 2020

Dear All,

In light of the University’s announcement yesterday evening about suspending on-campus classes and activities for the remainder of the semester, I write to update you about the Department of Music's plans over the coming weeks.

Our first priority remains the health and well-being of our students, faculty, staff, and community members. Thus, it is with much regret but with solidarity that we have made the decision to cancel or postpone until next academic year all public performances sponsored by the Department of Music. We are exploring the possibility of enabling remote access to some of our public offerings; we will let you know as soon as that information becomes available. Princeton University Concerts will continue to announce updates on the series' events separately.

Beginning Saturday, March 14, 2020, both the Woolworth Center and the Effron Building in the Lewis Arts Complex will be open only to members of the Princeton University community with an active ID card. All classrooms and studios in Woolworth will be locked and unavailable for group rehearsals. Practice rooms in Woolworth will remain open; while the pianos are being sanitized regularly, we strongly request that you are extra attentive to wiping your hands and the piano keys both before and after each use. 

Office hours:  Woolworth and Effron

The Department of Music staff will be available to answer questions or provide assistance by phone, email, or by Zoom (by appointment) Monday through Friday between 9 am and 5 pm throughout the remainder of the semester.  We will, however, be adjusting the office hours to meet the changing needs of our students and faculty.  In order to assist students leaving campus next week, both the Woolworth and Effron offices will be open at least between 10 am and 2 pm, March 16-19, 2020. 

Mendel Library:

The Mendel Music Library will be open only to holders of an active Princeton University ID card.  Next week’s hours will be Monday through Friday between 9 am and 5 pm. 

The Department of Music is strongly committed to providing the best possible experience for our students under these difficult conditions. My colleagues and I will be in touch with faculty and students in each of our programs as we work out the various options.  I will also be setting up virtual office hours beginning next week; stay tuned for more information. 

We know that this is a frightening and difficult time; my heart breaks especially for our extraordinarily talented seniors who are deprived of the opportunity to share their gifts with the community. So much of what we do in in the Department of Music requires making music together, side by side.  However, at this moment, due to circumstances beyond our control, we are obliged to let go of this practice that is precious to us all, precisely at the time in which we need it most.  Despite all of this, I am grateful for our shared passion which connects us always.

My hope is that you and your loved ones remain safe during this difficult time; please keep some music in your lives – it will help! 

Wendy Heller

Scheide Professor of Music History

Chair, Department of Music

Director, Program in Italian Studies