Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
November 3, 2020
Q: Why is the Philharmonic canceling its spring 2021 concert season?
A: The safety of our musicians, staff, and community members is our first priority and motivated the final decision to cancel all planned concerts through May 2021. We are following the advice from local and state leaders and health officials regarding social distancing guidelines. This combined with the loss of one of our rehearsal and performance venues made producing full orchestra concerts during the COVID-19 pandemic not feasible.
Q: When do you expect to resume full orchestra performances if COVID-19 is still a public health threat?
A: Public safety is always our foremost priority. The Philharmonic will work closely with state and local health officials and abide by all public safety requirements to ensure a safe return to the stage.
Q: Will Philharmonic subscribers get their money returned for canceled concerts?
A: The Philharmonic is devoted to its valued subscribers. With the cancelation of concerts, we will be working with each subscriber individually to determine if they choose to make a donation, exchange their purchase to another concert, or receive a full refund. Ticket information can be found here. We appreciate the generous public support many people are making to help sustain the Philharmonic during these challenging times.
Q: What is the Philharmonic’s expected financial loss from the canceled season and concerts through 2020?
A: Even after implementing severe cost-cutting measures since the pandemic began, the Philharmonic expects to face at least a $1.8 million loss in revenue this year due to the need to cancel the fall concerts. Due to the generosity of the community and a grant from the Small Business Administration’s Payroll Protection Plan loan, the Philharmonic was able to compensate all employees through August 31, 2020.
Q: During the pandemic, have donations to the Philharmonic diminished?
A: The Philharmonic is fortunate to have the generous support of our community during this unprecedented time. Thus far, individual donors, foundations, and sponsors have graciously stepped in to provide critical interim sustaining support for the orchestra through this required pause in performances.
Q: Why can’t fundraising bridge the financial gap during this challenging time?
A: While contributed revenues are always important, ensuring the Philharmonic’s viability for future generations relies on the engagement of our community through building audiences and attendance at concerts. This form of long-term support can only be gained by resuming concerts when it is safe.
Q. Will the Philharmonic continue its education programs in regional schools?
A: The Philharmonic is deeply committed to music education across our region. We are working closely with each school district in order to comply with new regulations during this health crisis. For example, the Youth Symphony Orchestra and Club Orchestra programs have been able to successfully resume. Other activities are being streamed into classrooms so students can continue to experience education and enrichment activities.
Q. What is the status of the contract negotiations between the Philharmonic and the musicians?
A: The Philharmonic has been in contract negotiations with the musicians’ Union since the Summer of 2019. Both parties have come to the negotiation table on several occasions to discuss how to reach a mutually acceptable agreement. The Philharmonic made a proposal to the Union on September 28 and is awaiting a reply, and hopes to continue these discussions to reach a new contract agreement soon. The Philharmonic remains committed to an agreement that is fair to the musicians and will ensure the financial viability and stability of the orchestra for years to come.