April 21 update: postponements and cancellations at orchestras, conservatories, and concert halls

Posted on: April 21, 2020

From the time that COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) first impacted the performing arts, The Hub has been tracking postponements and cancellations by U.S. and international orchestras, performing arts centers, and conservatories.

The League of American Orchestras is posting resources and information about coping with the pandemic as a service to the orchestra field. These resources include information about the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security package; discussion groups and one-on-one consultations for League members; guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and other authorities; and more. Find regularly updated resources, guidance, and information on the League’s coronavirus preparedness site.

To help reduce the spread of the virus, orchestras and other music organizations are obeying government bans on large gatherings, adhering to shelter-in-place orders, and complying with guidance from health authorities. The following organizations have recently announced postponements, cancellations, and other shifts in concerts and related activities. Many orchestras, musicians, conservatories, and others are posting videos, recordings, and educational resources online free of charge; visit the League of American Orchestras’ new, regularly updated directory of digital programming at SymphonySpot.org. Note: orchestras and festivals are revising their plans as the situation evolves; refer to individual websites and social media pages for the most up-to-date information. (This list is not complete, and we will continue to post announcements as they arrive.)

The Durham Symphony Orchestra (North Carolina) has cancelled its May 2 concert in Cameron Park and postponed its May 9 concert in Trinity Park. The orchestra had previously cancelled concerts through April. The orchestra is launching a series of weekly posts featuring selections from previous concerts, curated and introduced by Music Director William Henry Curry.

The Florida Orchestra (St. Petersburg) has cancelled the rest of its concerts through the end of the season on May 31. Coronavirus concerns had forced the cancellation of concerts since March 20. Cancelled concerts were to take place in multiple venues in Tampa, St. Petersburg, and Clearwater. The orchestra’s board of directors had previously voted to pay musicians and staff through the end of the season. The Florida Orchestra has launched TFO at Home, an online series that includes virtual performances, videos from musicians’ homes, learning resources, and more.

The Edmonton Symphony Orchestra (Alberta, Canada) has cancelled all remaining concerts of the 2019-20 season, through June 15. The Winspear Centre, the orchestra’s home, has cancelled or postponed events through the end of June. The Edmonton Symphony has streamed some concerts, and Concertmaster Robert Uchida is performing a series of violin Bach performances set in the empty Winspear Centre that will be posted online. Upcoming “Live From The Winspear: From Stage to Screen” events will be announced.

The Muscatine Symphony Orchestra (Iowa) has postponed the two final two concerts of the 2019-20 season and will perform them early in the 2020-21 season. The symphony will announce plans for its annual free July 4 concert on the Mississippi Riverfront at a later date.

The Music Academy of the West (Santa Barbara, California) has moved to a virtual learning and performance model for the first half of its eight-week Summer School and Festival. During the Music Academy Remote Learning Institute (June 15-July 10), all of the young musicians will receive mentorship online from faculty, guest artists, and industry leaders. Concerts by the musicians will be shown on livestreams and video recordings. If health regulations allow, the second half of the Music Academy will transition to ​an in-person event, July 13-August 8.

The National Repertory Orchestra (Breckenridge, Colorado), a summer music festival for young musicians, has announced the cancellation of the 2020 season, which was to mark its 60th anniversary. The organization has also cancelled related events in addition to full orchestra concerts at the Riverwalk Center in Breckenridge. Musicians who were to participate in the 2020 festival have been invited to attend the 2021 National Repertory Orchestra Season without retaking an audition.