Whitworth Wind Symphony cancels trip to China amid coronavirus outbreak

SPOKANE, Wash. — The Whitworth Wind Symphony has canceled their upcoming trip to China in response to the Wuhan coronavirus outbreak.

The symphony was supposed to travel to Beijing, Guilin and Chengdu in March. The orchestra has changed plans and will now be going to Germany and the Czech Republic.

Richard Strautch, director of the symphony, released the following statement to 4 News Now:

“While the cancellation of our first concert tour to the People’s Republic of China was a huge disappointment, the health and safety of our students is our first concern. Even though we were not going to be in the areas affected by the outbreak, the closure of many public venues and restrictions on public gatherings alone made the prospect of a concert tour unviable. However, the fact that our tour company (Grand Tours, Inc. of St. Paul, MN) was able to pivot so quickly and put together another fantastic opportunity for us to perform in Europe – and during the same timeframe in March –  is really astounding. We are thrilled that we will still be able to go someplace wonderful to share our music and a bit of Whitworth and Spokane.”

On Thursday, the World Health Organization declared coronavirus a public health emergency of international concern. WHO defines a public health emergency of international concern as “an extraordinary event” that constitutes a “public health risk to other States through the international spread of disease,” and “to potentially require a coordinated international response.”

Previous emergencices have included Ebola, Zika and H1N1.

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