Online amusement in the age of coronovirus

Let’s face it, social distancing is sad. #CancelEverything is sad. Isolation and quarantine are sad. But as long as we’re testing the capabilities of zoom and other videoconferencing software and agreeing to stay at least 6 feet away from people, we might as well see and hear beautiful things. The world’s symphonies, museums, aquariums, and artists are providing access to their joy online. This is a running list, please let me know if you hear of others and I will update.

While these are all free, please consider making donations to your favorite museums and arts spaces, and artists and musicians to lessen the burden on all in this difficult time.*


  1. You’ll get a form in the mail this week. Fill it online before April 1 with some really basic information on you and your family. This helps in so many ways.
    1. We get quick, accurate information to better assess how to allocate public services and political representation.
    2. It means a stranger doesn’t have to go knocking on your door in a month looking for you and possibly spreading this virus further.


  1. Berlin Philharmonic is offering free access to its online concerts. Use the code BERLINPHIL when you check out.
  2. The Metropolitan Opera will be HD streaming a recorded opera every evening at 7:30pm ET on their website starting March 16.
  3. The Seattle Symphony will be sharing videos, live-streams, and other broadcasts every evening at 7:30pm PDT.
  4. The Vienna State Opera has opened its video archives and will be playing ballets and operas online at 7pm or 5pm CET (registration required).
  5. Yo-Yo Ma is occasionally posting #SongsofComfort on twitter. This man is a national treasure. If you’ve never had the opportunity to hear him play, do try. I bawled like a baby when I got to see him at Tanglewood a few years ago.


  1. The National Gallery of Art has several exhibitions online and also has kid activities for download.
  2. Here’s a list of 11 other museums from around the world that you can visit online.


  1. The Monterrey Bay Aquarium has webcams available of its many different sea environments.
  2. Two baby eagles were born at Chincoteague National Park last month and they have a webcam! They post occasional videos and the eaglets are adorable.
  3. The Denver Zoo has a baby rhino and the videos they are posting are amazing.
  4. Big Bear Valley Eagle Nest Cam


  1. LibriVox offers a ton of free audiobooks for a range of books whose copyrights have expired, read by volunteers. I’ve been listening to Evangeline and it’s great
  2. Kindle and Apple Books also offer books for free whose copyrights have expired.
  3. If you have a library card, you can get Kindle Books through Overdrive. Here are instructions on how to set it up.
  4. You can download 300,000 books from the NYPL for free.
  5. Reach, Incorporated, a DC-based literacy non-profit, has its teen authors reading their books on their youtube channel and keeps updating with new content.
  6. Audible has a free 30-day trial for audiobooks and has made some titles free.


  1. Down Dog App is an at-home yoga and barre app that’s free to download and use through April 1.
  2. The Ballet Physique streaming studio is a Denver, CO-based barre studio with great instructors and has a 14-day free trial.
  3. Les Mills has a bunch of free HIIT workouts on their website for quick, hard cardio workouts.


  1. Scholastic has a bunch of kid activities for download while schools are closed, from pre-K to Grade 6+.
  2. FreeCode Camp has 450 online courses you can take for free.
  3. National Geographic also has a lot of kids’ homeschooling resources, Pre-K to 12.


  1. St. John’s Episcopal Church in DC is live-streaming church services

*Edited and restructured as the list gets longer. Keep sending them!


Author: ekfletch

I am an independent researcher on issues of gender, labor, violence, education, and children.

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