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INDIANAPOLIS — The Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra announced on Tuesday it is laying off musicians and staff because all their concerts have been canceled and they don't know when they'll start again.
The news comes as the Indianapolis Jazz Foundation is making an effort to raise money for musicians out of work because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Rob Dixon is a saxophonist who usually plays six nights out of the week in the Indy area, but the COVID-19 outbreak put a stop to that.
"I think the musicians and gig workers are on the front line of our economy," Dixon said. "They're the first wave it really affects."
Dixon and other musicians like him have lost their main source of income. That's why several different organizations have come together to help.
"I just want to give a big shoutout to the Indianapolis Jazz Foundation, the Jazz Kitchen, Penrod Society, Owl Music Group and all these great musicians in town we're raising money for," Dixon said. "We're actually at about $40,000 of our $50,000 goal."
LEARN MORE | Indy Musicians Relief Fund
The money has been raised in three days and the money continues to come in.
Erica Stickler with the Indianapolis Jazz Foundation said it's bringing people together even while we're physically apart.
"It's just a different level of compassion, of generosity that we're seeing and it really brings people together, it brings communities together," Stickler said.
"On the other side of this, I know they're going to be ready to entertain people and I know people will be ready to go and check them out," Dixon said.
NOTE: Since this story was initially published, The Indianapolis Jazz Foundation said they have surpassed their $50,000 goal for the Indy Musicians Relief Fund. Musicians can apply for grants to help them while dealing with a direct loss of income due to canceled or rescheduled performances. If you are a musician that needs help, you can email Valerie Phelps at email@example.com.