Faced with rising COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations in the region and the loss of a viable performance venue, Thomasville Entertainment Foundation has made the decision to cancel its revised 2020-21 concert series.
“Last week, after months of using a rolling 30-day decision-making protocol regarding city offices and venues, the City of Thomasville informed TEF that the Municipal Auditorium will not be available for our upcoming concerts,” said Rick Ivey, TEF’s executive and artistic director.
Ivey said city officials based their decision on the fact that COVID-19 cases have surged, hospitalizations are increasing and Georgia’s vaccine rollout had not, as of the time of their decision, proceeded beyond front-line healthcare workers and emergency responders.
“As much as we may not like it, this is the right and responsible decision on their part,” he said. In light of these developments and in consideration of the health of our audience, artists and volunteers, it is clear that we are left with no alternative.”
In cancelling the series, TEF’s executive committee also voted to issue refunds to all season ticket holders for the remaining four concerts: Branford Marsalis, J’Nai Bridges, An Evening in Paris and the Count Basie Orchestra. Refunds will be processed as quickly as possible in the coming weeks.
“Our loyal patrons and supporters have been very patient and understanding as we’ve announced ongoing changes and revisions to the series schedule and lineup. TEF is so fortunate to have that strong legacy of community support,” Ivey said. “Our attention now shifts to the future, and we’re optimistic that TEF will continue to play a positive, impactful role in this region for many seasons to come.”
The concert series cancellation does not, at this point, impact the TEF Family Series’ upcoming outdoor events. TEF plans to present the Atlantic Coast Theatre for Youth’s production of “The Fairy Tales of Grimm” on March 13 at the Thomasville Center for the Arts, as well as its third annual Pops in the Park concert with the Atlanta Pops Orchestra Ensemble and Bluegrass Music’s Entertainers of the Year, Balsam Range, on May 2 at the Ritz Amphitheater downtown.
Established in 1937, Thomasville Entertainment Foundation is a volunteer-powered, non-profit organization celebrating 83 years of entertaining the community. In addition to presenting concerts by acclaimed artists, TEF offers a dedicated series of performances geared to families and younger children, provides educational outreach programs for students and awards performing arts scholarships and grants to promising young artists.
For more information, visit www.TEFconcerts.com or call (229) 226-7404.