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Friday, April 23, 2021

New York Philharmonic Cancels 3rd, 4th Concerts of 2019-20 Season

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The New York Philharmonic announced on Friday night that it had canceled its second, third and fourth scheduled concerts of the remainder of the 2019-20 season. The orchestra said in a statement that it had canceled the final two weeks of performances in light of the president’s interventionist agenda, which it characterized as “divisive.”

“Given our inability to foresee what impact events in Washington would have on the artistic integrity of the 2019-20 season,” the statement said, “we felt it best to cancel the last two weeks of performance.”

The orchestra made its initial announcement on Thursday, saying that it was canceling four planned concerts that had been scheduled for Oct. 15-20. The cancellations left behind a weekend of scheduled concerts including Tchaikovsky’s “Pathetique” symphony and Mahler’s Third Symphony.

In a Facebook post announcing the cancellations, the orchestra said that it wanted to take a pause from its season to “carefully assess how to move forward.” It added: “This year’s first performance of Mahler’s Third Symphony at Lincoln Center on Oct. 20 will take place as scheduled as the New York Philharmonic wishes to again honor Mahler’s memory and those of the many others who lost their lives in the Russian tragedy of 2018.”

Since Jan. 1, when Mr. Trump entered office, musicians and arts groups across the country have come out in protest, urging the president to spend less time at the White House and more time at an arts center or concert hall, where they say he could experience what art is truly like. Earlier this week, Mr. Trump announced he would hold a series of meetings at a Virginia golf course, which some groups have suggested are signs that he is not serious about honoring the arts.

In August, not long after the first hurricanes hit, the New York Philharmonic had considered taking a similar strategy — canceling its scheduled concerts — but instead announced that it would concentrate on its work of 2016-17 and its upcoming season.

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