Weekly Newsletter 

December 14, 2020 — The Bay Area Early Music Digest 
This week in Early Music: 

A Note From Us

Get an inside look at SFEMS each week!

From the silly to the sublime, I have been diving into holiday performances from years past to remind us that though we are unable to nourish ourselves with the seasonal rituals of years past, hope is just around the corner.

Though the first coronavirus vaccine doses are being sent across the country this week, experts anticipate that rollout will continue well into 2021. With many in the early music community in higher-risk groups, we hope that vaccines will be available sooner rather than later.

Until then, let us keep making the choices to stay healthy and safe, each and every day.


Derek Tam, Executive Director

A Year in Review: Your Donations at Work

Change is never easy, especially this year!

Our successful adaption online would not have been remotely possible without every generous act of kindness: your donations, online engagement, and participation.

Take a look below at our year in review to see your support at work! As we round out the calendar year, please consider a donation to help us start 2021 strongly.

As an added incentive, did you know that the CARES act allows all taxpayers to take a charitable deduction of up to $300, even if you do not itemize?

Stay Tuned: More Concerts and Classes Coming Soon!

Our faculty and staff have been hard at work behind the scenes to bring you more scintillating concerts and classes in the spring of 2021—stay tuned as we gear up for more offerings in the new year!

Facebook Chats: The Ins and Outs of Going Online

SFEMS Facebook Chats with Paulina Image
Over the next month, join us for our "Keeping the Music Alive" series, featuring short, live interviews every several days with various community members about how SFEMS is making an impact during the pandemic. Subscribe to our Facebook page and you'll be notified when we head online—usually in the early afternoon!

Enjoy this conversation between Marketing Communications Manager Lorena Zapata and Paulina Francisco, our Berkeley Festival production assistant who also provided much support for our online workshops!

Early Music Freelancers' Relief Fund—Ninth Round Now Open

Relief fund grant recipients may apply for a ninth grant one month after the date they turned in their eighth grant applications. If you have continuing need, please resubmit your application with documentation demonstrating your continuing need.

First-time grant applicants, as well as repeat applicants who have received fewer than eight grants, will receive priority. (You may file for a continuing grants one month after the day you turned in your previous application.)

As the coronavirus pandemic wreaks an unprecedented financial toll on the world economy, our local early music freelancers have been particularly hit hard. Months of work have dried up in days, leaving many musicians on the brink of financial ruin.

In an effort to help our musicians, the SFEMS board has taken the lead in setting up a short-term relief fund for local early music freelancers. Since then, we have received over $50,000 in donations. This fund will provide one-time, first-come, first-served $250 grants to musicians in need, and will do so until funds run out.

In Memoriam: J. Jeff Badger

J. Jeff Badger SFEMS Newsletter
A beloved advocate for early music in the Bay Area, J. Jeff Badger passed away last week from natural causes. An arts administrator who held roles with numerous music organizations, including Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra and American Bach Soloists, J. Jeff was the executive director of San Francisco Renaissance Voices and Healing Muses at the time of his death. Our condolences go out to his family and friends in this time.

Learn How To Renew Your Membership Step-By-Step

Excited about becoming a member or renewing your membership? SFEMS Marketing Communications Manager Lorena Zapata will guide you step-by-step through the process online!
If your membership renewal is due in the next several months but you are encountering financial difficulties, please contact administrator Stacey Helley at No membership will lapse during the current crisis if we are informed that you would like to continue being a SFEMS member.

To find out your membership status online, log in on our membership page. (N.B. If you use a different login email address than previously on record, please note that it will create a new, separate profile for you that will not have any membership data.)

You will then be prompted to update your contact information. If there is no change, please click "save and continue."

On the next screen, you will be able to see your membership level and expiration date if you are a current member. You may renew a membership within 30 days prior to the expiration date.

Still not sure? Watch this handy video!

Have Questions? Here's How You Can Reach Us!

If you’re having technical troubles accessing a virtual workshop, online concert, or have a general question for us, please do not hesitate to contact us. We are here for you!

Click on the button below to read about the various ways to reach us.

Early Music Corner: Early Music America's Tom Zajac Memorial Scholarship

Explore a different facet of the early music world each week!
Thomas Zajac SFEMS Newsletter
Honoring Tom Zajac (1956–2015)

The Thomas Zajac Memorial Scholarship will provide a biennial scholarship of $1,500, starting in 2021, to early music performers and scholars who wish to pursue specialized study in ethnic and/or folk traditions, instruments, or styles, for the purpose of exploring cultural cross-fertilizations in the history of early music and bringing that knowledge to bear in historically-grounded scholarship and performance.

Tom was the director of the SFEMS Medieval/Renaissance Workshop for many years until his untimely death in 2015.

Read More!

Facebook Post of the Week

FB POTW 12/14
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Our lively Facebook community brings you the latest SFEMS updates, contests, and more! Don't miss out on making new friends, fascinating discussions, and a chance to share the joy of early music!

4.3k followers and counting...


Thank You to Our New Facebook Followers!

Yana Bourkova-Morunov
Dan Rielly
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Rebecca Chinn
Monica Prasse Boruch
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David Montanye
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This Week's Events

Want your early music event featured on the SFEMS Weekly Calendar? Contact us here and online at

For events, email SFEMS's Marketing Communications Manager, Lorena Zapata at Please submit listings no later than the Tuesday before the Monday publication.
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