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Here’s How to Get Some Free High Culture While You’re Social Distancing

The famous Leonardo Da Vinci painting ' The Mona Lisa' is seen on display in the Grande Galerie of the Louvre museum on August 24, 2005 in Paris, France. Dan Brown is the author of numerous bestsellers, including Digital Fortress, Angels and Demons, and Deception Point. His acclaimed novel 'The Da Vinci Code'has become one of the most widely read books of all time. (Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images)

Okay. You’re working from home. Everything is closed. You’re not supposed to go out. All that can be a bit of a drag, so much so that you might start getting tired of the same old streaming options. But for once, the internet is a blessing. There are all sorts of things you can do right now digitally to get in some culture during this time of crisis.

Visit a Museum

While many museums have closed their physical doors, their digital ones are still open. Thanks to a partnership with Google Arts and Culture, over 2,500 museums and galleries to put their beautiful art and exhibits on display digitally. You can stroll through the Met in New York, or browse the Musee D’Orsay in Paris, or look at the Vermeers in the Mauritshuis in the Haag. Yes, you can even look at a T-Rex in the Field Museum.

There’s so much to explore and enjoy. With this tool, you can just look at the art, or you can use google street view to give you the experience of walking through the actual physical museum. And you can also use google to explore the connections and learn more about the works that most interest you. It’s a fun way to spend the time.

(via: Southern Living)

Enjoy Some Opera

Have you always wanted to learn more about opera, or give it a try? Or are you already a fan who need more Verdi and Wagner in your life? Well, I have good news! While The Metropolitan Opera is closed, they are offering nightly streams of fully staged operas on their website!

Tonight, for instance, is a great one: Carmen, by Georges Bizet. It’s a perfect starter opera if you’ve never tried one before. It’s sexy, dangerous and the music is fantastic. Check it out and see what else is on the schedule!

Not into opera? NPR has a whole list of concerts that will be streaming all over the world.

(via OperaWire)

Learn a Little Something

Did you know that there are hundreds of courses from Universities around the world that you can take for free online? I know I sound like a targeted ad saying this, but there are indeed all sorts of classed offered through services like Edx.Org and Coursera on a huge range of topics.

You can learn all sorts of things like persuasive writing and public speaking or start learning how to program computers. Could be fun and useful!

Go Beyond Netflix

There’s a lot of streaming content out there, but as a result of the coronavirus, many lesser-known streaming services are making their standard two-week free trial a thirty-day free trial. Here are a few fun ones:

Acorn TV: It’s all British all the time over on this fun little app (one that my Agatha Christie-loving stepmom swears by). There are a plethora of mysteries to enjoy, including our favorite here at The Mary Sue, Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries. Right now you can get 30 days free with promo code FREE30.

Shudder: For those of you that are more daring, try Shudder, the specially curated horror streaming service. It’s hugely popular among all my horror-loving friends, and right now you can get your first thirty days for free with the code SHUTIN.

SundanceNow: Check out some of the best in independent cinema and shows on Sundance Now. We recommend the awesome and groundbreaking dramedy This Close, starring Shoshanna Stern. You can get Sundance now for free for 30 days (as opposed to their usual 7 days free) with promo code: SUNDANCENOW30.

(via Paste Magazine)

Go to the Library

Maybe you just want something nice to read and don’t want to pay much, or nothing at all. While physical libraries are closed, you can still access them digitally!  You can check out public library books on your kindle or you can take a look at the Libby app, which gives you access to thousands of free books and audiobooks via libraries!

It’s a stressful time out there, but there is a wealth of art, music, knowledge, and stories that can help to get us through. As a final note, here’s two minutes of the great Yo-Yo Ma gifting us with some Bach.

(Image: Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images)

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Jessica Mason (she/her) is a writer based in Portland, Oregon with a focus on fandom, queer representation, and amazing women in film and television. She's a trained lawyer and opera singer as well as a mom and author.