The Eugene Symphony joins orchestras across the country in ending its 2019-20 season, but it says it’s not canceling the shows. Instead, the symphony says it’s postponing the remaining concerts for another day, to be announced.
The decision follows health official and government authority statements, as well as other arts groups in Oregon, according to a press release. The orchestra was scheduled to perform two concerts in May (Maurice Ravel’s Bolero and Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No. 2) and two performances in June (Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony and Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf).
The symphony is asking patrons to hold on to their tickets. However, patrons can request the Hult Center to donate the value of the ticket to the Eugene Symphony.
On March 23, the symphony said it would still pay its musicians if they were hired to perform in March or April, according to a press release statement from executive director Scott Freck.
The Eugene Symphony hasn’t decided whether to cancel (or postpone) its summer concerts at the Cuthbert Amphitheater and Bohemia Park in Cottage Grove. And the 2020-21 concert series is still scheduled to begin in the fall.
“These are certainly difficult circumstances for our orchestra and many others across the world,” music conductor and director Francesco Lecce-Chong said in a statement. “As much as it breaks the hearts of my colleagues and myself to not be rehearsing and performing music for you in person right now, the safety of society must come first. In the meantime, in keeping with the Eugene Symphony’s legacy of innovation, we stay committed to using technology and all available means to bring beauty, hope, and comfort to our community.”
The Eugene Symphony has been more active in the digital world. Lecce-Chong has concert watch parties and music education Mondays. On Saturday, April 25, Eugene Symphony broadcast The Four Seasons of the McKenzie River, which is available at EugeneSymphony.org/Watch until June 9. The February 2018 concert of Antonio Vivaldi’s Four Seasons not only featured Rachel Barton Pine as a guest soloist and Lecce-Chong on the harpsichord but also more than 600 photos of the McKenzie River.