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BFrank

Big Ears Festival

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3 hours ago, Adam said:

Do not deceive yourselves.  EVERYTHING between now and at least the end of April will be postponed/cancelled, and I wouldn't rule out May & June.

I would say definitely May, and June is a definite possibility. Beyond that anything's possible! :(

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I wouldn’t hold your breath for June and suspect July might also be a gamble too.

Glastonbury over here is likely toast. Suspect that my favourite jazz festival at Swanage may be impacted too.

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As long as everything's clear by November...

Don't want Thanksgiving to be cancelled.

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15 hours ago, BFrank said:

I would say definitely May, and June is a definite possibility. Beyond that anything's possible! :(

Agreed--at this point I'm not even sure we're going to be able to host our outdoor Jazz In July concert series here in Bloomington, a Friday-night event that always draws anywhere from 400 to 750 people.  Public life of any sort is on indefinite pause.

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I just don't see how a slow-moving, invisible threat like this will go away quickly. Maybe if someone comes up with a new method of protection.

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Do they have ANY performance video they can stream?  Or could they work with their artist roster to get some? Have a Big Ears Channel or something? Or did they get exponentially popular in a way that they didn't really think about that in time? no blame if so, just saying, this year sounded like it was going to be a pivotal one in terms of broader visibility, would hate for that to be totally wasted.

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Optimistically thinking about the future.

 

TWO WEEKENDS: March 18 - 21 and 25 - 28

It’s been a while since we were last in touch. We hope this message finds all of our Big Ears family healthy and managing to find some joy and peace in these strange, tumultuous, and transformative times.

We want to thank all of you for your encouragement and support during this difficult time. Your patience during the process of refunding your ticket purchases for 2020 — and the extraordinary generosity that so many of you showed in donating to Big Ears — has helped us to weather the storm and was deeply appreciated.

We’d hoped to share our plans for Big Ears 2021 several weeks ago. We’ve been planning and strategizing the festival’s future since early April, waiting for clarity on the pandemic and its impact on our ability to turn those plans into action. Unfortunately, this that timeline remains uncertain.

Our primary goal has been to offer TWO Big Ears weekends in 2021 — each with a unique line up and program of its own — combining as much of the programming scheduled for 2020 as possible with many new programs that were already in the works. We’ve discussed this with many of the artists who were scheduled for the 2020 festival — as well as with others who were planning to play Big Ears 2021 — with very positive response. We are hopeful and optimistic.

The two weekends we have in mind are March 18 – 21 and March 25 – 28; however, it will still be several weeks — perhaps until late-August or early-September — before we know for certain if those weekends are actually feasible. The health and safety of everyone who attends Big Ears — and of our community — is our #1 concern. If these dates don’t allow for that, we’ll pivot to weekends later in the year.

In the meantime, we’re exploring new ideas and opportunities to support the work of artists we love and share it with you. We’ll stay in touch as these plans evolve., and we eagerly look forward to the time when we can all come together for another unforgettable Big Ears weekend.

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I do hope they get/got some online/streaming platform presence going, either in lieu of or as a supplement to any festival perfomances that may or may not happen.

Bang On A Can got that shit going on already, so there' at least the outline of a model.

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I think March is overly-optimistic. I bet it happens no sooner than Fall 2021.

Not crazy about the 2 weekend format, either. But they posted that info on FB and got a lot of feedback about that. Here's their response:

Thanks for the response and feedback.
Here’s the thing. Many - actually most - of the artists can only do one weekend or the other. So, it’s not a choice between presenting everyone on a single weekend or on two. We realize that for many this would necessitate a choice - and we understand how difficult that might be. But we’re also determining ways in which the festival might do more in offering opportunities to artists and for audiences. A number of great festivals in the world span multiple weekends, often dictating difficult decisions for those who attend. But what a luxury to be able to choose, no?
We share everyone virus concerns. That's the reason for waiting to announce line ups and to put tickets on sale. We need to see how things play out. We are also working on a back up plan should that be needed.

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It seems like a remote prospect at this point. A longer festival is fine, even if I can only attend a part.

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Got this email the other day:

Our founder and executive/artistic director, Ashley Capps, sent an email to his personal list of friends, colleagues, and peers. We asked if we could share it with you, and he agreed:

“Now is the time to experiment, and there is no choice but to experiment.”
— Gustavo Dudamel, Los Angeles Philharmonic

“It’s time to move on, time to get going …”
— Tom Petty

 
Dear Friends,

You can’t always wait.

This pandemic has had a devastating impact on live music and the performing arts. It has decimated the livelihoods of musicians and other artists, the teams that support them, and the organizations and venues that make their performances possible.

We all long for the return of live events, but we can’t just sit around and wait until they do. I'm with Gustavo Dudamel and Tom Petty… challenging times call for creative responses and new ideas.

At the Big Ears Festival, we're going online to embrace the world of streaming and the unique opportunities it can offer in bringing artists and audiences together.

Our goal is not to simply stream concerts. We’re striving to create a different type of experience.

THIS FRIDAY at 8pm (edt), we’ll put you at the very heart of one of the finest jazz bands of our time, The Bad Plus. You’ll be on stage with the band, soaking in the historic vibes of the 110-year old Bijou Theatre, in the very midst of the play and interaction between these astonishing musicians. Known for their fresh covers of tunes by Nirvana, David Bowie, Radiohead, and Tears for Fears along with their own instantly memorable compositions, The Bad Plus offer a master class in the art of making music.

On Friday, October 16, we'll take you into the mysterious “keyhole” rock quarry at Ijams Nature Center, where guitarist Mike Baggetta weaves a musical spell, amidst nature and the ruins, with his band mates in mssv — legendary rock bassist Mike Watt (The Minutemen, Iggy & the Stooges) and drummer Stephen Hodges (Tom Waits, Mavis Staples) — beamed in from somewhere in the ether. Post-punk, post-rock, post-genre instrumental virtuosity defines mssv, who are celebrating their new record release, Main Steam Stop Valve, with this one-of-a-kind musical experience. 

Then, on Friday, October 23, we’ll transport you to the rooftop of St. Ann’s Warehouse in Brooklyn, NY, where guitar legend Marc Ribot and his band, Ceramic Dog (with Shahzad Ismaily and Ches Smith), perform their first concert together since the virus struck — also on the occasion of their new recording made during quarantine, What I Did On My Long Vacation, which was released on October 2. In Ceramic Dog fashion, they’ll offer a wild, exuberant, and majestic performance with the mighty Brooklyn Bridge and the New York skyline serving as their stage set.

Transcendent performances by visionary artists, experienced from new perspectives and captured in iconic and sometimes unexpected settings — that’s what we have in mind with Sites and Sounds from Big Ears. There’s more to come … 

All proceeds from these programs go to support the artists, the Big Ears Festival, and our network of partners and collaborators.

If you can’t make the initial streaming at 8pm (EDT) on Friday night, each program is replayed throughout the weekend, until Sunday night at midnight — though tickets must be purchased before the initial program stream concludes.

Details on all shows and how to purchase tickets are available below — and at www.bigearsfestival.org

I hope you’ll join us in this new adventure. As Tom Petty sings, “What lies ahead I have no way of knowing …” but you can help us in shaping the future and building things back.  Who knows where this might lead? And if YOU have any thoughts or ideas to share, we would love to hear them. We’re all in this together.

Wishing each of you the very best,


Ashley Capps
Executive/Artistic Director, Big Ears Festival
 
 
msg
THE BAD PLUS 
Friday, October 9 | 8pm (edt)


THIS FRIDAY at 8pm, The Bad Plus  Reid Anderson, Orrin Evans, Dave King — will perform their first concert since the lockdown from the Bijou.

Tickets for The Bad Plus stream from Big Ears and the Bijou are available HERE
 
msg
mssv
(MIKE BAGGETTA, STEPHEN HODGES, MIKE WATT)
Friday, October 16 | 8pm (edt)


Tickets for the mssv stream from Big Ears are available HERE
 
msg
MARC RIBOT'S CERAMIC DOG
Friday, October 23 | 8pm (edt)


Tickets for the Ceramic Dog stream from St. Ann’s Warehouse and Big Ears are available HERE
 
 
 
 

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5 hours ago, JSngry said:

Got this email the other day:

Our founder and executive/artistic director, Ashley Capps, sent an email to his personal list of friends, colleagues, and peers. We asked if we could share it with you, and he agreed:

“Now is the time to experiment, and there is no choice but to experiment.”
— Gustavo Dudamel, Los Angeles Philharmonic

“It’s time to move on, time to get going …”
— Tom Petty

 
Dear Friends,

You can’t always wait.

This pandemic has had a devastating impact on live music and the performing arts. It has decimated the livelihoods of musicians and other artists, the teams that support them, and the organizations and venues that make their performances possible.

We all long for the return of live events, but we can’t just sit around and wait until they do. I'm with Gustavo Dudamel and Tom Petty… challenging times call for creative responses and new ideas.

At the Big Ears Festival, we're going online to embrace the world of streaming and the unique opportunities it can offer in bringing artists and audiences together.

Our goal is not to simply stream concerts. We’re striving to create a different type of experience.

THIS FRIDAY at 8pm (edt), we’ll put you at the very heart of one of the finest jazz bands of our time, The Bad Plus. You’ll be on stage with the band, soaking in the historic vibes of the 110-year old Bijou Theatre, in the very midst of the play and interaction between these astonishing musicians. Known for their fresh covers of tunes by Nirvana, David Bowie, Radiohead, and Tears for Fears along with their own instantly memorable compositions, The Bad Plus offer a master class in the art of making music.

On Friday, October 16, we'll take you into the mysterious “keyhole” rock quarry at Ijams Nature Center, where guitarist Mike Baggetta weaves a musical spell, amidst nature and the ruins, with his band mates in mssv — legendary rock bassist Mike Watt (The Minutemen, Iggy & the Stooges) and drummer Stephen Hodges (Tom Waits, Mavis Staples) — beamed in from somewhere in the ether. Post-punk, post-rock, post-genre instrumental virtuosity defines mssv, who are celebrating their new record release, Main Steam Stop Valve, with this one-of-a-kind musical experience. 

Then, on Friday, October 23, we’ll transport you to the rooftop of St. Ann’s Warehouse in Brooklyn, NY, where guitar legend Marc Ribot and his band, Ceramic Dog (with Shahzad Ismaily and Ches Smith), perform their first concert together since the virus struck — also on the occasion of their new recording made during quarantine, What I Did On My Long Vacation, which was released on October 2. In Ceramic Dog fashion, they’ll offer a wild, exuberant, and majestic performance with the mighty Brooklyn Bridge and the New York skyline serving as their stage set.

Transcendent performances by visionary artists, experienced from new perspectives and captured in iconic and sometimes unexpected settings — that’s what we have in mind with Sites and Sounds from Big Ears. There’s more to come … 

All proceeds from these programs go to support the artists, the Big Ears Festival, and our network of partners and collaborators.

If you can’t make the initial streaming at 8pm (EDT) on Friday night, each program is replayed throughout the weekend, until Sunday night at midnight — though tickets must be purchased before the initial program stream concludes.

Details on all shows and how to purchase tickets are available below — and at www.bigearsfestival.org

I hope you’ll join us in this new adventure. As Tom Petty sings, “What lies ahead I have no way of knowing …” but you can help us in shaping the future and building things back.  Who knows where this might lead? And if YOU have any thoughts or ideas to share, we would love to hear them. We’re all in this together.

Wishing each of you the very best,


Ashley Capps
Executive/Artistic Director, Big Ears Festival
 
 
msg
THE BAD PLUS 
Friday, October 9 | 8pm (edt)


THIS FRIDAY at 8pm, The Bad Plus  Reid Anderson, Orrin Evans, Dave King — will perform their first concert since the lockdown from the Bijou.

Tickets for The Bad Plus stream from Big Ears and the Bijou are available HERE
 
msg
mssv
(MIKE BAGGETTA, STEPHEN HODGES, MIKE WATT)
Friday, October 16 | 8pm (edt)


Tickets for the mssv stream from Big Ears are available HERE
 
msg
MARC RIBOT'S CERAMIC DOG
Friday, October 23 | 8pm (edt)


Tickets for the Ceramic Dog stream from St. Ann’s Warehouse and Big Ears are available HERE
 
 
 
 

Missed the Bad Plus but plan to catch "mssv" next week.

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BIG EARS 2021
 
While we had great hopes for the return of Big Ears in March of 2021, it has become clear that this will not be possible; however, we remain quite positive about the prospects of presenting Big Ears later in 2021. We have been actively exploring scenarios and making plans for the past couple of months. We intend to start sharing our ideas soon after the election.

These have been difficult and trying times — requiring flexibility, creativity, and lots of patience — but we’re committed to creating another unforgettable festival experience as soon at it is safe and feasible to do so.

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BIG EARS 2021
 
Given the current situation, we’re going to postpone any plans for producing a Big Ears Festival in March 2020. There’s no way. It simply isn’t feasible. If there’s a lesson to be gleaned from the past nine months, it's to take nothing for granted and be flexible and ready to pivot as the situation demands.

Nevertheless, we remain optimistic about the future — and about the possibility of staging Big Ears in 2021.

Here’s what we have in mind:    
We're planning a scaled-down Big Ears Festival for late Spring, likely the weekend of May 27 - 30. We will, of course, proceed only if we can do so confidently and safely. Moving two months later will enable us to expand the festival’s traditional footprint, incorporating some beautiful outdoor spaces along with some of our traditional venues. There will be fewer performances than in the past few years — allowing us to open up more space in the overall schedule. We will also cap festival attendance at less than half of those we admitted for recent festivals.
 
We also plan to present another festival weekend in late August or September. Ideally, this would be a second festival for 2021, also scaled-back in comparison to recent years. If the virus prevents us from staging a festival in late May, we will use this period to reschedule that event; otherwise, our goal is to create a second weekend of unique programming.
 
In March of 2022, we plan to return with a full Big Ears Festival experience.

While we're actively planning for a late May festival, we won't announce details until late January or early February. You’ll be the first to know once we have news. Safety for all is our foremost concern. Beyond that, we are, as always, fully committed to producing a Big Ears Festival that will be an enjoyable and successful experience for all who take part.

In the meantime, we hope that you’ll stay in touch. We’re working on exciting new streaming initiatives and may even have a special surprise or two up our sleeves, depending on how the coming weeks play out.

We're grateful for the tremendous enthusiasm and support for Big Ears that so many of you have shown. You make it possible for us to continue to do what we do — and we eagerly anticipate coming together for another unforgettable Big Ears weekend next year.

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14 hours ago, kh1958 said:
BIG EARS 2021
 
Given the current situation, we’re going to postpone any plans for producing a Big Ears Festival in March 2020. There’s no way. It simply isn’t feasible. If there’s a lesson to be gleaned from the past nine months, it's to take nothing for granted and be flexible and ready to pivot as the situation demands.

Nevertheless, we remain optimistic about the future — and about the possibility of staging Big Ears in 2021.

Here’s what we have in mind:    
We're planning a scaled-down Big Ears Festival for late Spring, likely the weekend of May 27 - 30. We will, of course, proceed only if we can do so confidently and safely. Moving two months later will enable us to expand the festival’s traditional footprint, incorporating some beautiful outdoor spaces along with some of our traditional venues. There will be fewer performances than in the past few years — allowing us to open up more space in the overall schedule. We will also cap festival attendance at less than half of those we admitted for recent festivals.
 
We also plan to present another festival weekend in late August or September. Ideally, this would be a second festival for 2021, also scaled-back in comparison to recent years. If the virus prevents us from staging a festival in late May, we will use this period to reschedule that event; otherwise, our goal is to create a second weekend of unique programming.
 
In March of 2022, we plan to return with a full Big Ears Festival experience.

While we're actively planning for a late May festival, we won't announce details until late January or early February. You’ll be the first to know once we have news. Safety for all is our foremost concern. Beyond that, we are, as always, fully committed to producing a Big Ears Festival that will be an enjoyable and successful experience for all who take part.

In the meantime, we hope that you’ll stay in touch. We’re working on exciting new streaming initiatives and may even have a special surprise or two up our sleeves, depending on how the coming weeks play out.

We're grateful for the tremendous enthusiasm and support for Big Ears that so many of you have shown. You make it possible for us to continue to do what we do — and we eagerly anticipate coming together for another unforgettable Big Ears weekend next year.

I go that email, too. VERY skeptical about those May dates happening, but I'll keep an open mind. I think the fall is more realistic.

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mail?url=https%3A%2F%2Fmcusercontent.com
BIG EARS FESTIVAL RETURNS!
Thursday, March 24 thru Sunday, March 27, 2022
The Big Ears Festival will return the weekend of Thursday, March 24 thru Sunday, March 27, 2022. We are deeply immersed in the booking process already and we're certain that you'll be pleased by the extraordinary array of great musicians joining us for a spectacular weekend. We intend to announce the 2022 line-up — and put tickets on sale — in September 2021.

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The rock band Sparks is so far the only group confirmed for next year.

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BIG EARS GAINS GRANT SUPPORT

In recognition of its work supporting new artists and community engagement, Big Ears recently received grants from New Music USASouth Arts, and the Tennessee Arts Commission to support activities at and around the 2022 Big Ears Festival. Additionally, Big Ears is the has been awarded a Shuttered Venue Operators Grant from the Small Business Administration, which aims to mitigate lost revenue due to the global pandemic through partial funding of operating expenses.
 
The New Music USA Organizational Development Fund offers grants to outstanding organizations and presenters that work regularly with, and support the development of, music creators and artists and offer a crucial resource to the community. Big Ears, one of 72 awardees across 22 states and 17 musical genres, received support for the 2022 festival. Knoxville-based new music collective Nief-Norf, a frequent Big Ears partner, also received one of the grants.
 
South Arts' Presentation Grants support the public presentation of Southern artists and engaging those artists for educational opportunities. Big Ears received a Presentation Grant for New Orleans clarinetist, saxophonist, composer, and bandleader Aurora Nealand to participate in three days of residency next March, followed by two days of performance at the 2022 festival with her band, the Royal Roses. Nealand’s residency will focus on working with high school students to make audio recordings documenting stories from their lives and then, collaboratively, creating musical scores to accompany and amplify those stories.
 
The Tennessee Arts Commission’s Arts Project Support grants provide assistance for arts projects and activities across all disciplines that focus on community vitality and engagement in urban counties. Big Ears received a combination of grant funds and one-time American Rescue Plan funds, which will be used to pay artists performing at the 2022 festival.
 
The Shuttered Venue Operators Grant program was established by the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Nonprofits, and Venues Act, and amended by the American Rescue Plan Act. The program includes over $16 billion in grants to shuttered venues and is administered by SBA’s Office of Disaster Assistance. Other Knoxville recipients include our friends at the Tennessee Theatre, the Bijou Theatre, the Mill & Mine, and the Pilot Light.
 
Funding from these organizations is vital to the success and sustainability of the Big Ears mission, and we are grateful for their assistance. Big Ears is an independent nonprofit organization, and more than half of our annual revenue comes from individual donors, private foundations, businesses, and government agencies. To learn more about supporting Big Ears, visit our donor page or contact Casey Fox, Director of Development.

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WHAT'S NEXT FOR BIG EARS?


In March 2019, as the triumphant sounds of the Art Ensemble of Chicago's riveting festival finale still echoed in our ears, it was unimaginable that three years would pass before Big Ears would return.
 
We have tried to use the time wisely. Thanks to the generous support of many, we have used this time to strengthen our organization, explore new ideas, imagine the future, and create the most mind-blowing festival we could imagine for our return.

We are ready.

On Tuesday, September 14, we will unveil the program for Big Ears 2022. Spanning March 24 – 27, the breadth and depth of performances and the essential footprint of the festival will be familiar, even as it pushes in new directions: over 100 concerts in Knoxville’s historic theaters, churches, repurposed industrial spaces, clubs, museums, and galleries—featuring the most imaginative innovators and visionaries making music today.

Festival passes will go on sale at 12 noon ET on Thursday, Sept. 16.

There will, however, be two special pre-sales: 
Big Ears donors—whose support has sustained us through these challenging times—will have exclusive access to purchase passes in the 24 hours following the announcement. The following day, access to the pre-sale will be offered to previous pass holders at all levels from the 2019 and 2020 festivals. Shortly before the September 14 announcement, you will receive an email with details for participating in the pre-sale.
 
We have surprises in store for 2022 as well—artist residencies and community collaborations, free pop-up concerts, films, talks, exhibitions, and exhilarating collaborations to mark the occasion.

In this ever-changing health landscape, safety is our number one concern—for our patrons, for the artists and their teams, for ourselves and our staff, and for our community. While March is still seven months away, we are committed to implementing policies that meet or exceed CDC guidelines and other standards to ensure the safest festival environment possible.
 
We’re looking forward to seeing you in March. It’s time!
mail?url=https%3A%2F%2Fmcusercontent.com
Ashley Capps, Executive and Artistic Director

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Strong lineup for the 2022 Festival. Let's hope for the best. Vaccination is required.

https://bigearsfestival.org

Jazz artists include; John Zorn; Bill Frisell; Sons of Kemet; Jason Moran; Preservation hall Jazz Band; Marc Ribot; Andrew Cyrille; Ron Miles Quartet; Nubya Garcia; Shabaka Hutchings; Joshua Abrams; Ambrose Akinmusire; Jamie Branch; Kris Davis; Harriet Tubman; Theon Cross, Pedrito Martinez; Myra Melford; Aurora Nealand and the Royal Roses; Jeff Parker; Christian Scott; Ches Smith; Craig Taborn.

World music artists include: Mdou Moctar (Niger); Lakou Mizak (Haiti);  Leyla McCalla.

Edited by kh1958

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2022 BIG EARS FESTIVAL COVID-19 POLICY

 

The health and safety of everyone who attends Big Ears is our number one priority. With the rise of COVID cases due to the Delta variant, we are now mandating that all staff, artists, and audience members be fully vaccinated in order to participate in ticketed activities presented by Big Ears. In the coming months, we’ll describe the steps we intend to take to verify the vaccination status of audience members. As we continue to observe the situation, we reserve the right to institute other COVID-related safety measures in advance of the festival.

 

To be considered fully vaccinated for attendance at the 2022 Big Ears Festival, you must have received your second dose in a 2-dose series (Pfizer or Moderna) or a single-dose vaccine (Johnson & Johnson) on or before Wednesday, March 9, 2022.

Big Ears Festival 2022

Big Ears Festival 2022

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This is going to be a GREAT festival. Bought my pass today. Can't wait!!

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I purchased my pass just now. Really looking forward to this. I did notice that hotels seemed to be fuller than usual when I booked a couple of weeks ago, so I would advise taking care of that sooner rather than later if planning to attend.

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