A Covid-19 Update from General Manager Blake Smith

In the interest of keeping all our loyal subscribers and patrons informed, I am writing to update you on the Clayton Center for the Arts schedule and events. 

I never anticipated we would be announcing our 10th Anniversary, 2020-2021 Season during a world-wide pandemic. I hope you have seen, as I have, how important the arts have been to moving us through this difficult time.

I am pleased that we have been able to keep the arts alive by offering online screenings of Southern Circuit films, National Geographic Live streaming events, readings by Amy Vaughn of Appalachian Ballet and by sharing information on access to museums, virtual events and performances from Knoxville Symphony Orchestra, Broadway stars and offerings by many arts groups.

 I wish I could say we see an end to these uncertain times and are able to announce our final season line-up and go on sale as we typically do. Alas that is not the case as I write this.

The performers are still uncertain on their ability to travel and many are still trying to re-stage shows to comply with social distance while not decreasing the artistic quality of their work. Meanwhile, we are trying to determine how the Center can comply with guidelines and what changes we need to make to capacity and seating arrangements, entry/exit processes and pathways, restroom access, concession sales, hand sanitizing and the myriad of other small details we can no longer take for granted.

This is the reason we will be presenting the season without dates until more details can be solidified. Although the schedule is still in flux, it is our intention to find a way to include every one of them at some point in the future, whether this upcoming season or next. We anticipate annoucing our season by the end of July.

Never fear, as we keep saying “It’s only intermission, we will be back!”

We will continue to bring you the high caliber season shows we have committed to and will give you plenty of notice when it is appropriate to go on sale.

The safety of our patrons, artists and employees continues to be of utmost importance and the decisions we make regarding re-opening and presenting the arts will be based on that guiding principal along with input and guidance from the TN Pledge and organizations such as the CDC and the Blount County Health Dept.

We know how vital the arts are to our community and are working diligently to develop safe and solid plans that will allow us, once again, to bring you the world class arts experiences you love.

We are working on smaller events that take into account all of the restrictions placed by TN Pledge. As soon as we are able, we will let you know when intermission is over and we are able to present the arts once again.

On behalf of the entire Clayton Center team, thank you again for your support during this unprecedented time of what seems like constant change. We hope you are all staying well and finding things to be grateful for every day.

Blake Smith 

General Manager 

Clayton Center for the Arts