It is with deep sadness that the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra (APO) has announced it will not perform its upcoming Beethoven 250 symphony programme at this time and is also unable to livestream the concerts which were due to take place between 21 and 29 March.
The APO previously announced the live concerts in the Symphony Series concerts were being moved to livestream-only as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak and initial restrictions on massed gatherings.
Following yesterday’s announcement of further restrictions on indoor gatherings, the APO has made this very difficult decision with the orchestra’s health and safety in mind.
APO Chief Executive Barbara Glaser says, “Taking into consideration the numbers involved in each concert and the close proximity of the musicians when they are performing, we know our only option is to protect the health and wellbeing of our musicians and staff, which is paramount. The orchestra has had two fantastic weeks of rehearsal of the symphonies with conductor Giordano and we look forward to bringing Beethoven’s immortal music to life in front of a live audience as soon as we can.”
In the previously planned time slots of 7.30pm on Saturday 21 March, Tuesday 24 March, Thursday 26 March and 5pm on Sunday 29 March, the APO will be restreaming videos from its back catalogue of livestreams. RNZ Concert will also share the streams via its website and Facebook page, as well as broadcasting the same performances on the radio. The APO’s partners for the Beethoven 250 events, Auckland Arts Festival and Auckland Live, as well as The New Zealand Herald will also share the streams via their digital channels.
APO musicians have been asked to select their favourite performances to share again with audiences. First up will be Music Director Giordano Bellincampi with his choices outlined below.
Bruch Violin Concerto No.1
Featuring violinist James Ehnes
Conductor: Giordano Bellincampi
Beethoven Symphony No. 6 ‘Pastoral’
Conductor: Douglas Boyd
“The COVID-19 impact has been an unprecedented situation for the arts industry and the ramifications on both work and workers is far-reaching and will be felt long into the future. We are working as hard and as fast as we can to find creative solutions that will keep us connected to our communities and audiences. We are heartened by the support of our partners in delivering this content to music lovers now they are unable to attend concerts in person. Any further changes to our programmes in the immediate future will be communicated as soon as possible,” Glaser says.
The APO will continue to monitor the COVID-19 situation and Government guidelines closely regarding future concerts, and will communicate with audiences, artists and stakeholders appropriately as changes occur. The latest updates will be posted on the APO website, the APO Facebook page and the APO Ticketing line voicemail.
The livestream can be viewed at 7.30pm, Saturday 21 March via the following channels:
The New Zealand Herald