The 2020 Asia Pacific Community Music Network (APCMN) Conference, due to take place in Hong Kong from 5-8 March, has been postponed because of the coronavirus epidemic, according to the organisers, who aim to reschedule the event for the autumn.
A message on APCMN’s Facebook page states:
‘The situation now is critical: the shortage of masks, atmosphere of panic within the city. Although it is always our dream to gather you together in Hong Kong. Confronting this severe situation, public events at this moment may put your well-being, our partners’ and colleagues’ safety at risk, which makes us believe that it is not the best timing to organise the conference… We will pay close attention to the situation and confirm the date of rerun. Please keep following our news and we will inform you of the exact dates as soon as possible.’
The conference is the latest event to feel the impact of coronavirus in Hong Kong. The city’s Leisure and Cultural Services Department, which is responsible for public performance venues, and Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts, the leading regional conservatoire, have announced that their venues will be closed for the first half of February, resulting in cancellations of a large number of performances scheduled to take place as part of Hong Kong Arts Festival.
All schools in Hong Kong are currently closed because of the epidemic, with classes resuming on 2 March at the earliest.