SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — The San Francisco Symphony announced Wednesday the cancellation of all remaining concerts in the 2019–20 season and also its summer series in the wake of the continuing coronavirus outbreak.
In light of the cancellations, officials said, members of the orchestra, chorus, and stagehands have all agreed to reduce their salaries by an average of 25% during the timeframe of April 19 to September 5.READ MORE: San José School District Secures Vaccine for Entire Workforce
Retiring Music Director Michael Tilson Thomas will also not receive compensation for canceled concerts.
The symphony faces more than $13 million in lost revenue and $5.4 million in net losses due to the cancellation of 64 performances, including the remainder of the Orchestral Series, Great Performers Series, Summer with the Symphony and film concerts and the cancellation of a three-week tour to Carnegie Hall and Europe.
The 2019–20 season also marks the conclusion of Tilson Thomas’ 25-year tenure as music director.READ MORE: Golden Gate Fields Races to Make Up for Missed Vaccine Appointments
“Our top priority from the very beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic has been to take care of the people who are the San Francisco Symphony family,” says San Francisco Symphony CEO Mark C. Hanson. “Realizing that it may be many months from now before we will be allowed to resume normal concert activity, we worked together to implement a shared-sacrifice plan that attempts to balance individual and institutional needs.”
Tilson Thomas was sadden to be able to complete his final season at the helm.
“We would have been performing essential works in which we have developed our special sound, style and collaboration,” Tilson Thomas said in a prepared statement. “It would have been such a joy to share our innovative tradition with our audiences and to savor once again how much we have grown together during these last 25 years. I’m looking forward to our making music together in the future in my new role as Music Director Laureate.”MORE NEWS: Study Shows Stockton Universal Basic Income Experiment Led to Increased Employment
In response to the current global environment with audiences seeking meaningful ways to connect to music and each other from home, the symphony has begun to make a shift in focus and is moving resources towards the creation of new curated online content and experiences. Included will be a forthcoming 25-day digital celebration of Tilson Thomas’ 25-year tenure with the symphony.