Tanglewood cancels entire summer season; will present ambitious “online festival”

May 15, 2020 at 1:53 pm

By Lawrence A. Johnson

Photo: Marco Borggreve

The Boston Symphony Orchestra announced Friday that the Tanglewood Festival has been cancelled for the 2020 season due to Covid-19. That includes all live concerts and education programs scheduled from June 19 through August 27.

This is the first time in 75 years that the annual summer music festival in western Massachusetts has been cancelled. Tanglewood previously closed its doors during World War II from 1942-45.

Friday’s announcement makes Tanglewood the last remaining major summer music festival to officially shut its doors this summer season due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Santa Fe Opera announced earlier this week that it will be closed this summer as well.

The BSO will attempt to fill the void with a new initiative, the Tanglewood 2020 Online Festival, which will be available beginning July 1. In addition to streaming past performances of artists regularly appearing at Tanglewood, the project will present newly created content to be taped in June and July.

The new performances will include a series called Saturday Evening Great Performers, including artists such as Daniil Trifonov, Gil Shaham, Emanuel Ax, Joshua Bell and Jeremy Denk, Augustin Hadelich, and Yo-Yo Ma.

Other series will include Recitals from the World Stage and BSO Encore Performances. The latter will feature many previously unavailable Boston Symphony performances.

The Tanglewood 2020 Online Festival content will be both free and paid. Cost for the paid programming will be $5-$12 for a single stream, and $8-$80 for multiple stream packages, available for purchase beginning June 15.

For more information and program details, go to Tanglewood.org.

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