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February 21, 2020

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The virus is spreading in Europe and the Middle East. It knows no borders. Italy has canceled the Venice Carnival.

Let us pray that it's not as lethal as it appears now, because that's our only hope.

During the great 1918 flu epidemic, different places adopted different public health measures with respect to theaters. Scroll down to "The Show Must Go On" in this link:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2862336/

Interesting article, Diana. Much of the preventative measures mentioned in the article can be applied today, at least by individuals. Hopefully, the theaters will find a way to keep performances going while stemming the spread of disease.

My grandmother once told me that she had been talking to a neighbor over the fence and an hour later he was dead from the 1918 flu. None of my maternal grandparent's family got sick, including 4 small children. (My mother was born many years later but remembered the orange quarantine signs in the 30s.)

Hopefully, our ballet dancers and other theater personnel can continue to work and stay healthy, and we will be there to support them.

Sadly Georgiann, none of these measured worked. The virus went where it wanted to, except Western Samoa, because the governor there enforced a strict quarantine.

I offered it as an example of how this could affect theater, if the virus spreads. The affected area in Italy is not far from Milan, where La Scala is.

Pray for Italy, and the world, and hope that our health system can handle this.

Thanks, Diana. I understand now.

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