CMT Studios were temporarily closed after it was discovered that someone who attended last week's Rebuilding Nashville telethon was diagnosed with coronavirus. The news was discovered on Monday, and the studios reopened on Wednesday, to allow the entire space to be fully cleaned.
“Last night, we learned that an external attendee at a March 5 fundraiser for tornado relief efforts at the CMT Studios in our Nashville office has tested positive for COVID-19,” a CMT spokesperson told Billboard on Tuesday. “We immediately closed the office for a deep cleaning to fully sanitize the entire building and we will re-open tomorrow. Out of an abundance of caution, we’re requiring team members who were at the fundraiser to work from home for two weeks."
More than $500,000 was raised to help in the recovery efforts following the deadly tornado that hit Nashville and its surrounding areas early in the morning on March 3. Over a dozen artists participated in the telethon, including Lady Antebellum's Charles Kelley and Dave Haywood, Cassadee Pope, Devin Dawson, Gavin DeGraw and more. The artists have also been notified of the diagnosis.
"We are heartbroken by the devastation the tornadoes left upon Tennessee earlier this week," Dan + Shay said in a statement together, ahead of kicking off their The (Arena) Tour in Nashville with two sold-out shows. "Our love goes out to everyone affected by this tragedy. We are so proud to call Nashville our home, and have seen first hand that this community is strong, resilient, and compassionate. What this town does best in times of need, is come together, so it is only fitting that our tour starts tomorrow in Nashville at Bridgestone Arena.
"Friday and Saturday, through the power of music, we will all unite to celebrate the spirit of our incredible city," they continued. "On behalf of Dan + Shay, we will be making a $100,000 donation to The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee. We are looking forward to two unforgettable shows, in the town we hold dearest to our hearts."
The coronavirus outbreak has impacted much of the country music community. Stagecoach Festival postponed their three-day event until October, Old Dominion pulled out of their scheduled performance at the C2C: Country to Country Festival, and the Zac Brown Band canceled the entire spring leg of their The Owl Tour. In addition, the annual Tin Pan South Songwriting Festival, held all over Nashville, has been postponed until later this year.
Photo Credit: Getty / C Flanigan