Cancelled shows include Big Hits of the Small Screen, Messiah, and four of the orchestra’s flagship Master Series concerts.
The two postponed shows are RESPECT: The Music of Aretha Franklin, which was originally to have been presented over two nights this weekend, and Beethoven: The Symphonies, a series of four performances over two weeks conducted by Mark Wigglesworth, which was planned for September and will now take place in 2021.
In a statement, ASO managing director Vincent Ciccarello said there were several factors impeding the return to normal performance, including travel restrictions that affected the ability of its soloists and conductors to be in South Australia.
“This, along with social distancing, has an impact on each performance venue’s capacity and the concert’s financial viability.”
However, there will still be opportunities to see the orchestra on stage, including in the current Sanctuary series of free community centre concerts and a Classics Unwrapped performance to be presented at the Barossa Arts Centre on August 29. (A further Christmas Classics Unwrapped concert in December has been cancelled.)
Two sold-out Mozart concerts at Elder Hall in October and December – Mozart at Elder 3 and Mozart at Elder 4 – will go ahead as planned but with reduced capacity. The orchestra will also take to the stage for State Opera SA’s Summer of the Seventeenth Doll at Her Majesty’s Theatre in November.
The Virtual Concert Hall series will continue, with some previous performances available for viewing online again as “encore events”. A Chamber Series of Virtual Concert Hall performances is also planned.
The orchestra says all ticket holders affected by cancellations or postponements will be contacted directly regarding refunds or credits.
As previously reported, COVID-19 has forced State Opera to postpone or cancel most of the shows planned for the remainder of its 2020 season – with the exception of Summer of the Seventeenth Doll – while State Theatre Company SA returns to the stage next month with the Victorian thriller Gaslight, which was moved to Her Majesty’s Theatre to accommodate a larger audience.