Handel and Haydn Society Pledges to Pay Its Musicians for Canceled Concerts

Musicians Will Receive 100% of Salary

[Boston; April 7, 2020]

The Handel and Haydn Society announced it will be paying the salaries of its orchestra and chorus musicians for the canceled concerts in the 2019-20 season. Due to the COVID-19 crisis, H+H canceled performances of Bach St. Matthew Passion that were to take place on April 3 + 5, and Vivaldi The Four Seasons set for May 1 + 3. The H+H Executive Committee has pledged to pay orchestra and chorus members 100% of their expected salary for the performances. The payments will include 88 orchestra and chorus musicians and total more than $350,000. The payments will be made on the same day that the artists would have normally received a paycheck from the performances, so that no one will experience a drop off in income.

“The Handel and Haydn Society, like all arts organizations, is feeling the impact of these incredibly trying times,” said David Snead, President and CEO. “The Board felt we needed to stand by our musicians as we all navigate the economic uncertainty ahead. H+H is thankful for the many patrons who donated back their tickets, the generous donors to the Musicians’ Relief Fund, and we welcome all additional support through the donation page on our website.”

The Handel and Haydn Society looks forward to returning in the fall with a complete season of historically informed performances. Subscriptions are on sale now at handelandhaydn.org or by calling the Box Office at 617.266.3605.

Handel and Haydn’s 2020–21 Season Performances include:

Brahms A German Requiem September 25 + 27, 2020 Symphony Hall
Bach + Vivaldi Gloria – October 23 + 25, 2020 at Symphony Hall
Handel Messiah – November 27 + 28 + 29, 2020 at Symphony Hall
Bach Christmas – December 17 + 20, 2020 at Jordan Hall
Haydn + Mozart – January 22 + 24, 2021 at Symphony Hall
Mozart Great Mass – February 5 + 7, 2021 at Jordan Hall
Beethoven Symphony No. 7 – March 5 + 7, 2021 at Symphony Hall
Handel Israel in Egypt – March 19 + 21, 2021 at Jordan Hall & Sanders Theatre
Haydn The Creation – April 30 + May 2, 2021 at Symphony Hall

About the Handel and Haydn Society

Boston’s Handel and Haydn Society is dedicated to performing Baroque and Classical music with a freshness, a vitality, and a creativity that inspires all ages. H+H has been captivating audiences for 205 consecutive seasons (the most of any performing arts organization in the United States). Today, H+H’s Orchestra and Chorus delight more than 50,000 listeners annually with a nine-week subscription series at Boston Symphony Hall and other leading venues. Through the Karen S. and George D. Levy Education Program, H+H supports seven youth choirs of singers in grades 2-12 and provides thousands of complimentary tickets to students and communities throughout Boston, ensuring the joy of music is accessible to all. H+H’s numerous free community concerts include an annual commemoration of the original 1863 Emancipation Proclamation concert on December 31. The artistic director of the Handel and Haydn Society is Harry Christophers. Under Christophers’s leadership, H+H has released 12 CDs on the Coro label and has toured nationally and internationally. In all these ways, H+H fulfills its mission to inspire the intellect, touch the heart, elevate the soul, and connect us with our shared humanity through transformative experiences with Baroque and Classical music.