New York City Ballet has cancelled its 2020 Spring Season which was scheduled to begin on Tuesday, April 21 and continue for six weeks, through Sunday, May 31, at the David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center. The cancellation will include all performances and events, including the May 7 Spring Gala, as well as the Company’s public programming, which includes Workshops, Inside NYCB, and Family Saturdays offerings.
The announcement was made today by NYCB Artistic Director Jonathan Stafford and Executive Director Katherine Brown. “The health and safety of New York City Ballet’s artists, staff, patrons, and community at large is our number one priority at this time,” they said. “While we are devastated to have to cancel the upcoming spring season, the current pandemic has left us with no other choice. We look forward to the time when we can bring the beauty and joy of NYCB’s incredible artists and repertory back to our stages and welcome our wonderful audiences back to the theater.”
NYCB will continue to provide salaries and benefits for its performers and other personnel, including the Company’s administrative staff members who are working remotely at this time, through what would have been the end of the Spring Season on May 31. Beginning June 1 NYCB’s dancers and musicians will begin their annual post-Spring Season layoff period before rehearsals resume for several planned summer engagements.
NYCB is also launching a special Relief Fund to ensure the company’s future during this extraordinary and challenging time. “The impact of this crisis on the wellbeing of the entire NYCB community of employees, which includes 100 dancers, 62 musicians, and more than 250 other administrative and theater staff members, will be significant, and we hope that our devoted patrons and audience members will support our relief efforts however they are able,” said NYCB Associate Artistic Director Wendy Whelan.
NYCB is also currently in talks with the labor unions whose members work for the Company or the David H. Koch Theater, which NYCB manages, to begin preparing for the long-term impact of the crisis. These include, among others, AGMA (dancers), Local 802 (musicians), Local 1 (stagehands), and Local 764 (wardrobe and costume shop). “We are extraordinarily grateful to our company members and their union leadership for the productive and positive response to our efforts to weather this unprecedented moment in our history,” said Stafford and Brown. “We are all working towards the same goal of supporting our employees during a very difficult time.”
Due to the impact of the coronavirus crisis NYCB projects a loss of $8 million through the end of this fiscal year alone, which closes on June 30. The Company will continue to monitor the evolution of the situation in the event that adjustments to staffing, salaries, and other operational expenses might be necessary.
Patrons who have already purchased tickets for NYCB’s 2020 Spring Season will be contacted by the Company in the coming days with further instruction on how to donate the value of their tickets to the Relief Fund, put the value on account to use for ticket purchases during NYCB’s 2020-21 season, or request a refund.
All other performances scheduled to take place after May 31, including NYCB’s annual summer season at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center (July 14 through 18); engagements by NYCB MOVES at Bard College (June 26 through 28), Center for the Arts in Jackson Hole, Wyoming (July 29), and the Vail International Dance Festival (July 31 and August 1); and the Company’s annual summer presentation at Guild Hall (August 21 and 22) in East Hampton, NY, are currently scheduled to go on as planned, pending further developments and guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and government officials.