Canceling the Eastern Music Festival is an indication that at least some experts believe North Carolina has a long way to go before things return to normal, whatever the new normal will be.

The Eastern Music Festival announced on Monday, April 20 that the 2020 season from June 27 to August 1 was canceled.

The press release states, “The EMF Board of Directors made the difficult decision to cancel all programming and summer study for the 2020 season.”

For 59 years the EMF has been produced each summer on the campus of Guilford College, UNCG and other venues in Greensboro, and during that time the EMF has brought countless world-renowned visiting artists to Greensboro to teach and provide encouragement and guidance every year to over 265 musicians from age 14 to 23 from across the country.

EMF had scheduled more than 65 concerts for the 2020 season and over 30 outreach performances.

EMF Executive Director Chris Williams stated, “We are heartbroken that we will not be together in 2020. The lost opportunities for our students and our patrons cannot begin to be expressed. Our 60th anniversary season in 2021 will be something the whole EMF family will look forward to celebrating together.”

EMF Music Director Gerard Schwarz said, “We have an extraordinarily gifted and dedicated faculty and outstanding students. We will hold together and look towards 2021.”

Plans for the 60th anniversary season will be announced later this year.

Although the 2020 season is canceled, the costs of the EMF still exist and contributions to EMF to help it make that 2021 season truly remarkable can be made at or by mail to EMF, P.O. Box 22026, Greensboro, NC 27420.

Like most offices the EMF home office is currently closed but if you would like more information you can go to