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During COVID-19, Fresno Violinist Patrick Contreras Brings Live Music Closer To Home

Courtesy of Patrick Contreras
Patrick Contreras started offering front-lawn concerts after the coronavirus hit. It's been a way for him to share live music, even when venues are closed and concerts are cancelled.

This week we spoke to a musician who, like others, lost a lot of work when the pandemic hit: Performances were postponed, or cancelled altogether. Patrick Contreras, a Fresno violinist, started to offer front lawn concerts to make ends meet, and the idea has taken off. He says he’s heard from other musicians across the country, asking how he’s made it work. 

Credit Courtesy of Patrick Contreras
Contreras says he honed his street performance skills playing at fairs and nursing facilities, where he had to have a self-contained set.

  Contreras says he honed his street performance skills playing at nursing facilities and fairs where he used a self-contained set-up. He would bring a battery-powered speaker and his own music. That’s what he uses now, and he asks folks to stay 15 feet away, just in case. 

Listen to the audio postcard above to hear Contreras talk more about the idea, and about explain the origin story behind some of his own music. 


Laura Tsutsui was a reporter and producer for Valley Public Radio. She joined the station in 2017 as a news intern, and later worked as a production assistant and weekend host. Laura covered local issues ranging from politics to housing, and produced the weekly news program Valley Edition. She left the station in November 2020.
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