2020–2021 Season Update
Special Message from the Office of the President and General Director
Dear Minnesota Opera Family,
Today we share the latest update on our 2020–2021 Season from Minnesota Opera with you as a valued member of our community.
After carefully weighing our options for the upcoming season, under the guidance of elected officials and the Minnesota Department of Health, we have made the decision to cancel all currently scheduled performances that had been announced as our 2020–2021 Season schedule at the Ordway. As devastating and difficult as this decision is, our top priority remains the health and safety of our staff, artists, and audiences. Our plan is to welcome audiences back to the Ordway as soon as it is safe and practical, and updates about future performances will be shared as they become available.
Artists and artistic organizations are often heroic spiritual leaders in times of crisis. We offer connection, community, and shared storytelling that provides light, hope, and a path for our humanity to think differently and grow healthier. Our typical prescription to work our magic requires physical and emotional proximity to company members and our community at large. And we know that very proximity currently endangers our collective health.
We remain committed to supporting artists and our audiences by bringing the highest quality operatic experiences to our audiences in this challenging time. We are pleased to share our new and innovative 2020 Fall Season and a yet-to-be-announced Spring Season, which anticipates a February Gala event and two live, new productions at the Ordway starting in March 2021. The Fall Season offers a wide range of exciting alternative artistic activities including Opera in the Outfield at CHS Field, a digital version of Wuthering Heights, a 3D digital version of Das Rheingold, and a live-streamed holiday concert program. You can find more information about our updated 2020 Fall Season at mnopera.org/fall-season.
Additionally, virtual events and new digital content will continue to be featured through our At Home with MN Opera platform at mnopera.org/at-home, which was launched in March 2020 to foster continued connections with the MN Opera community and share great artistry worldwide.
We spend many years carefully planning performances at the Ordway that include a mix of imaginative journeys, soul-stirring productions, and beloved classics brought to audiences in new ways. Annually, hundreds of artists from the Minnesota community and from around the world come together to celebrate the human voice and create world-class opera for the Twin Cities. This means that these necessary cancellations will terribly impact hundreds of our singers, musicians, artists, technicians, and administrative staff members.
As the pandemic continues to progress, the effects on our organization are likely to be deep and long-lasting. We have taken the unpleasant steps of reducing our staff numbers, decreasing the hours of others, and leaving recently vacated positions permanently unfilled, ultimately affecting 11% of our full-time staff. In addition, remaining staff are working under a tiered salary reduction of up to 15%. Existing contract and part-time employee hours have been reduced an average of 61% in alignment with updated operational and production needs. These decisions were painful and not made lightly; we know that many people rely on MN Opera for their livelihoods and we are all heartbroken that we are being impacted in this way due to circumstances beyond any of our control.
Over our storied history, MN Opera has faced challenges before and will continue to persevere. To our dedicated donors, subscribers, and supporters, thank you. Thank you for your unwavering belief and commitment to help us bring great art to Minnesota.
President and General Director
How to Stay Connected to MN Opera
MN Opera is preparing a wide range of exciting alternative artistic activities to be presented as a part of our 2020 Fall Season, including Opera in the Outfield at CHS Field, a digital version of Wuthering Heights, a 3D digital version of Das Rheingold, and a live-streamed holiday concert.
Additionally, virtual events and new digital content will continue to be featured through MN Opera’s At Home with MN Opera platform, launched in March 2020 to connect with our audiences at home and share great artistry worldwide.
All patrons who purchased a subscription for cancelled performances will automatically have the value of those tickets transferred to their accounts. That money on your account can be applied to the new fall and spring season offerings, future performances (including 2021–2022 Season subscriptions), special events, refunded, or donated.
We hope you stay with us and keep your dollars available for future performances. Your investment in MN Opera today strengthens our fiscal vitality moving into the future. As a special incentive made possible by an anonymous donor, earn 10% back on any funds remaining on account on December 31, 2020, including any on-account funds used for purchases for the 2020 Fall Season before then. (Excludes refunds and donations.)
For more information, please call Patron Services at 612-333-6669, Monday through Thursday, 10am to 5pm or view our FAQ.
While all of our artists, musicians, artisans, and staff were so looking forward to sharing the joy and delight of our originally scheduled 2020–2021 Season at the Ordway with all of you, it is vital that we play our part in combating the spread of COVID-19, and encourage others to do the same. A situation of this magnitude is unprecedented for our organization and our community, and we are following the lead of our city, state, and federally elected officials in how we continue to find new ways to be stewards of our mission. Get the facts about COVID-19 here.
Which live events have been cancelled?
The originally scheduled 2020–2021 Season at the Ordway, spanning September 26, 2020 through May 23, 2021, is cancelled. It was scheduled to include 28 performances of five operas, including Mozart’s The Abduction from the Seraglio, Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin, composer Jeanine Tesori and librettist Tazewell Thompson’s Blue, Rossini’s Cinderella, and composer Paul Moravec and librettist Mark Campbell’s The Shining.
How Can You Help?
1. Donate directly to support MN Opera.
COVID-19 is negatively affecting so many industries, including the live performing arts. Please consider an additional tax-deductible donation to MN Opera to support our artists and our ongoing work as an organization. Your gift right now will make a critical difference.
2. Donate the value of your tickets.
If you choose to donate the cost of your subscription back to MN Opera, you will still be able to keep your seats for the 2021–2022 Season. This is a tax-deductible donation, and you will receive a receipt for your records.
If you would like to donate your tickets or have any more questions, please call Patron Services at 612-333-6669, Monday through Thursday, 10am to 5pm.