Canadian Music Week Hits Pause Button For 2020

Canadian Music Week is abandoning efforts to present the annual festival and conference in Toronto in 2020.

The 38th edition of CMW was originally to take place May 19-23 and was postponed due to the rapidly worsening pandemic that forced social distancing and lockdowns of most businesses. A make-up date was announced for September 9-11 at the Sheraton Centre and participating venues across the city, but uncertainties have forced these dates to be cancelled as well.

“After extensive consultation with industry partners, it has become apparent that - at this point in the public health emergency - September represented too many unavoidable obstacles,” CMW president Neill Dixon says. "A large part of nixing 2020 was the uncertainty in locking in the participation of international artists and delegates, many of whom might not be free to travel, and some of whom had already declined to attend."

“We are hopeful of finding a date in 2021 to continue our nearly four-decade tradition of bringing the world’s music to Toronto and Canadian music to the world,” Dixon says, adding that “we will not make any final decisions until such time that events surrounding covid-19 and the subsequent government directives are known. We will continue to follow protocols and assess our best options going forward.”

In the meantime, all ticketed concerts have been refunded or are in the process of being refunded. All CMW 2020 badges and wristbands will be honoured on the new dates.

Meantime, CMW organizers are investigating virtual options for mounting a digital extension of Canadian Music Week, including a series of webinars and conference live streams. 

More information on those initiatives will follow.

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