“Your Week Ahead” used to be Bocamag.com’s signature A&E column: a curated roundup of the week’s most anticipated cultural events that ran virtually every Monday, year after year, as predictably as the sunrise. Like everyone else, we didn’t plan on all live events grinding to a halt last March. We quickly scuttled the Week Ahead column, but that still left a seemingly eternal chasm on the website’s arts pages. I was, and am, contracted to supply three A&E blogs per week. How was I to write about the arts when there were no arts?
I’m proud to say that, 19 months into the pandemic, our content has never waned, in neither quality nor quantity. Nothing else in life felt the same at first, but our blog schedule maintained its clockwork predictability, giving some shape to the shapelessness of the days. We had no live music of theatre or art to write about it, so we ran a roundup of jigsaw puzzles, because remember when that was a thing for a minute? I penned the occasional commentary, and gushed about my recent discovery of “Star Trek.” We interviewed local arts leaders about how they were keeping afloat amid an existential crisis.
And we developed recurring content as well. Last April, I created the first Pandemic Playlist (then called Quarantine Playlist) in lieu of concert and music news. We’ve compiled 10 more since. We collaborated with Mitch Kaplan of Books & Books to offer exclusive book recommendations, because for a time, we were all reading more. And we transitioned our film coverage to the streaming services, because, for a while, that’s all we had from which to choose.
In three days, “Your Week Ahead” returns. Why now? Live concerts, after all, returned in August, and art museums and galleries have been open even longer. Quite simply, I needed the three regional arts powerhouses—the Kravis, Broward and Arsht centers—to reopen. They not only provide the richest trove of content in the tri-county region, but they are something of a bellwether for the area at large: If these three titans are back in business, what is everybody else waiting for?
I for one am thrilled to be reviving this staple of the website, which will give a familiar structure to our arts coverage while supporting our local events and venues, and I hope you are too. But we’re not jettisoning our pandemic-inspired content, either: Mitch Kaplan’s book picks will continue, as long as there’s a Books & Books to provide them, and we’ll continue to preview the month’s top streaming picks, because this remains the way most people watch movies. While our live music coverage has already returned to its pre-pandemic strength, you may even see an occasional playlist on our site, though we’ll have to come up with a new name for it—a rebranding that cannot come a moment too soon.