Editor's note: This is part of a contributed collection of students and faculty experience with COVID-19.
Concerts were being canceled before the full gravity of COVID-19 had even been fully realized. Maintenance Shop co-director and senior in advertising Kylee Van Veen said while university guidelines drove the Student Union Board to cancel all upcoming concert events, the Maintenance Shop is planning to reschedule as many as they can.
“The [concerts] we already had booked, a lot of people were looking forward to those ones already,” Van Veen said. “People were buying tickets to those ones, so we’d still like to make those ones happen for the campus and community.”
Van Veen said on top of rescheduling, they planned to book some new acts as well to make up for lost time.
The last concert the Maintenance Shop hosted was the band Tiny Moving Parts on March 12. Van Veen said she found out about the gravity of the situation that very night.
“It was weird, we were like, ‘OK, so tonight’s still happening,’” Van Veen said. “I talked to my co-director and our adviser, and we were just unsure as to how it would play out.”
Van Veen said before it had gotten to the point where the Maintenance Shop had to shut down operations, they were already in the process of cancelling shows.
“We thought it would be in the best interest to postpone and cancel these events anyway,” Van Veen said. “Just because of looking out for the community overall and also being able to staff and get volunteers for these concerts would just be difficult.”
In an attempt to keep Maintenance Shop fans engaged, Van Veen said they plan to stay in touch with the artists they had booked for the spring and share any livestreams or virtual concerts they plan on doing.
Van Veen also said they have been reaching out to followers and asking them to share their favorite Maintenance Shop memories. They have also been doing the “30 Day Song Challenge” on their Instagram page, where each day they post a song from an artist who has performed at the Maintenance Shop in the past.
At the end of the day, Van Veen said keeping fans in the loop via social media is the best they can do to tie everyone over until the fall.
“We’re working really hard to get our fall semester perfect and have a great lineup for that,” Van Veen said. “It’ll be great when we come back.”