March 31, 2020

Dear Friends of The Singers,

I hope that you are all well these days as we all experience shared fear and uncertainty about loved ones and the activities stolen from us by the global pandemic. The swiftness of change and the absence of proper goodbyes and “see you next weeks” has fed the grief that I am experiencing, heightened by canceled rehearsals and concerts that we were all very excited to share with you. This unplanned hiatus also puts the brakes on what would have been our upcoming season announcement and brochure. We are confident we will be back, but we also know it is prudent to hold off on announcing plans at this time as we turn attention to this current state of being.

Because of the coronavirus, COVID-19, The Singers’ Executive Committee, Board, and Staff have made the remarkably difficult decision to cancel the May 2020 concerts, essentially ending our 2019-2020 Season. The impact of losing the March and May concerts is financially devastating – these two projects are 50% of our ticket revenue on the budget. But the health of our artists, audiences, and staff (as well as the health of the entire community) is too important to risk being together right now.

Ticket holders will be notified separately from this letter, and we will provide a few ways in which you might choose to turn your tickets into a financial show of support or receive a refund. I would be remiss if I failed to ask you to consider allowing us to gratefully turn your purchase into a donation at this time. We, like the vast majority of non-profit organizations, are going to struggle to make ends meet at this time. Your support, in tandem with the Board’s thoughtful planning, will go a long way toward helping us weather this situation.

In May, The Singers and I were to present Dominick Argento’s beloved masterpiece, Walden Pond (which we will be presenting in the 2020-2021 season). Argento’s work comes to end when the Thoreau has returned to Walden years after leaving. Thoreau has returned to his site to see that much of the forest had been laid bare by the “woodchoppers.”  The parallel to today is striking:

“Since I left those shores the woodchoppers have laid them waste, but I remember, I remember… And though the woodchoppers have laid bare first this shore and then that, it struck me again tonight – Why, here is Walden, the same woodland lake that I discovered so many years; where a forest was cut down last winter another is springing up as lustily as ever; the same thought is welling up now to its surface that was then; it is the same liquid joy and happiness to itself and its Maker.” – Henry David Thoreau, from Walden Pond

May we all be so lucky, while remaining healthy and optimistic in these difficult days.

Matthew Culloton

Artistic & Managing Director

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