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Ludwig Van
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THE SCOOP | National Ballet Abandons Live Events Through 2021

By Michael Vincent on November 5, 2020

National_Ballet of Canada

The National Ballet of Canada has announced all remaining 2020/21 season events will be cancelled due to the ongoing uncertainty around the COVID-19 pandemic.

The decision was made after determining that the prospect of large gatherings amid the ongoing pandemic will be unlikely anytime soon.

“Although this news is not unexpected, the decision to cancel the remainder of the 2020/21 season was made with a heavy heart,” said Karen Kain, Artistic Director of The National Ballet of Canada.

“I am particularly disappointed that we must once again postpone the world premiere of my new production of Swan Lake which will now be presented in the 2021/22 season, but the health and safety of our artists and audiences continues to be our foremost priority,” Kain said. “We will return to the stage when it is safe to do so stronger than ever, and until then, we will continue to share the artistry of our dancers virtually and, when possible, in socially distanced live performances.”

The ballet company will focus the remaining 2020-21 season on presenting virtual events, which includes video formats created by Choreographic Associates Robert Binet, Guillaume Côté and Alysa Pires and acclaimed director Ben Shirinian.

During the company’s annual general meeting held virtually last week, the National Ballet reported a loss of approximately 4.9 million dollars from box office sales from the 2019-20 season due to cancelled events. After adjusting operations, they reported a deficit of $303,000, with company revenues under $32.8 million and expenses of $33.1 million.

“2020 has been a year for the record books and not in the way we had planned. It was to be a year of celebrating Karen Kain’s 50th anniversary”, said Barry Hughson, Executive Director.

Hughson also stated that before the shutdown, they were on track to meet their box office and fundraising targets.

The full 2021/22 season will be announced in spring 2021.

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Michael Vincent
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