Santa Fe Opera Cancels 2020 Season

By Francisco Salazar

General Director Robert K. Meya has announced the cancellation of Santa Fe Opera’s 2020 Season.

The festival, which was scheduled to open on July 3 and run through August 29, was forced to cancel due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent closure of nonessential businesses, constraints on public gatherings and restriction of both domestic and international travel.

In an open letter Meya said, “It is with profound sadness that I announce today that the Santa Fe Opera has been forced to cancel its 2020 Season as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. This difficult but necessary decision was made with the health and safety of our staff, artists, patrons and the entire Santa Fe community at the forefront of our thoughts. I am at a loss to describe the disappointment that I myself and all my colleagues feel today. I know that we are joined by the many singers, musicians and artisans who have been tirelessly preparing for our 2020 Season when I say that our greatest regret is not being able to share in the creative process with you, our beloved patrons.”

The Santa Fe Opera’s 64th Season was scheduled to present the world premiere of Huang Ruo and David Henry Hwang’s “M. Butterfly,” Wagner’s “Tristan und Isolde,” Dvořák’s “Rusalka,” Rossini’s “The Barber of Seville,”  Mozart’s “The Magic Flute,” and two Apprentice Scenes performances.

The company announced that that it will provide a level of compensation to all seasonal employees who were engaged to start work in the coming weeks. Meya noted, “Each year at this time, we begin to welcome over 600 additional staff members in preparation for our summer performances. Many of them now face an extremely difficult and uncertain future. It is with their welfare in mind that I announce our commitment to providing a level of compensation to all artists, musicians, artisans and seasonal staff who were engaged for the 2020 Season. But, we need your help.”

Ticket holders will be contacted by Santa Fe Opera to either get a refund, receive a credit for a future season, make a tax deductible donation or a combination.

The opera announced that the upcoming 2021 season will be announced at a later point and that the Santa Fe Opera will provide online learning activities in collaboration with school partners and public libraries.