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Thursday, April 2, 2020

Lyric Opera of Chicago’s General Director, President & CEO, Anthony Freud, announced today that all public performances, events, and activities remaining in the 2019/20 Season have been moved into upcoming seasons. This includes the musical 42nd Street, the new chamber opera Blue, Family Day at the Lyric Opera House, and all backstage tours, in order to heed social distancing recommendations and continue to support the City of Chicago and the State of Illinois in controlling the spread of COVID-19. This announcement signals the end of public performances and activity through June 30, 2020 – the end of Lyric’s current fiscal year.

Working to postpone rather than cancel planned artistic and engagement events, Lyric is pleased to announce that all of Lyric’s May and June performances and events have been successfully moved into upcoming seasons.

Lyric will present the new-to-Chicago production of 42nd Street (originally scheduled to run from May 29 - June 21, 2020) in the spring of the company’s 2021/22 season. The large-scale production from Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris will still make its U.S. debut at Lyric, and Stephen Mear, who was set to direct the production this spring, will return to direct.

The Midwest premiere of Blue, by composer Jeanine Tesori and librettist Tazewell Thompson, was scheduled to run June 16-28, 2020, at the Yard at Chicago Shakespeare Theater. It will now be presented in January 2021 at Chicago Shakespeare, conducted by Lyric’s music director designate, Enrique Mazzola. The Chicago premiere of Proving Up will be postponed to a later season. Blue is a co-production of The Glimmerglass Festival, Washington National Opera, and Lyric Opera of Chicago.

Ticket holders for Lyric’s annual Family Day event, planned for May 16, 2020, will be moved into Family Day on May 22, 2021. Lyric is also working to share child-friendly online content that explores the joy of opera with family audiences regularly.

Those holding tickets for canceled backstage tours this May and June will be offered backstage tour opportunities this fall as the 2020/21 season begins. More information on these dates will be announced at a later time.



Friday, March 13, 2020

At a press conference on Thursday, March 12, Illinois Governor J. B. Pritzker and Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced a State and City mandate that all large-scale events exceeding 1,000 individuals be canceled for the next 30 days as a preventive measure to stop the spread of COVID-19 disease (coronavirus). Additionally, the State and the City encouraged that community events of 250 people or more should be canceled until May 1st. This encompasses the time period of our long-planned and highly-anticipated Ring cycle. With great regret, we have no option but to cancel all three Ring cycles and the preceding two performances of Gotterdammerung.

We at Lyric, along with you at home, have been carefully monitoring every moment of this global pandemic, working in lockstep with the Chicago Department of Public Health. The health and well-being of our audiences, artists, and staff is our highest priority, and we have been standing at the ready to fully cooperate with our local and state officials in preventing the spread of this dangerous and unprecedented illness.

We are, of course, heartbroken to lose the Ring cycle. For the past six years, more than 300 artists have put their hearts and talents into the development of this event, and the excitement about bringing it to audiences from all 50 states and nearly 30 countries has been mounting since the moment the production was announced. The cycle performances themselves, and a large range of festival programming, promised to be a high point in Chicago's cultural season.

But right now, we all recognize that our top priority must be to contain the spread of COVID-19. For the safety of our loyal patrons and the greater good of our community, we recognize that this is the only choice.

We ask for your patience as we work through this extremely difficult slate of performance cancellations. We need your support at this moment more than ever.

Please bear with us as we work to provide you with the highest level of customer service and look towards a time in the near future when we can all come together to enjoy performances again.



The following performances are postponed as of April 2, 2020:

Family Day at Lyric 
Original date: 4/16/20
New date: 5/22/21
Ticketholders will receive new tickets to the 2021 event later this summer.

Blue, in collaboration with Chicago Shakespeare Theater at The Yard 
Original dates: 6/19-28/20
New dates: 1/15/21-1/24/21
Ticketholders will receive new tickets to the 2021 event later this summer.

42nd Street
Original dates: 5/29/20 - 6/21/20
New dates: Spring 2022, dates TBA.
Ticketholders are being contacted with their options. 

All public, group, and student Lyric Backstage Tours scheduled through June 30 have been postponed. Ticketholders will be offered dates during Fall 2020. 

Board of Directors Annual Meeting
Original date: 6/15/20
New date: TBD

The following performances are currently canceled. Ticketholders are being contacted about the disposition of their purchase. 

Gotterdammerung regular season performances: April 4 & 11

Ring Cycle:

Cycle 1
Das Rheingold, Monday 4/13/20, 7:30pm
Die Walküre, Tuesday, 4/14/20, 6:00pm
Siegfried, Thursday, 4/16/20, 6:00pm
Götterdämmerung, Saturday, 4/18/20, 5:30pm

Cycle 2
Das Rheingold, Monday 4/20/20, 7:30pm
Die Walküre, Tuesday, 4/21/20, 6:00pm
Siegfried, Thursday, 4/23/20, 6:00pm
Götterdämmerung, Saturday, 4/25/20, 5:30pm

Cycle 3
Das Rheingold, Monday 4/27/20, 2:00pm
Die Walküre, Wednesday, 4/29/20, 2:00pm
Siegfried, Friday, 5/1/20, 2:00pm
Götterdämmerung, Sunday, 5/3/20, 2:30pm

Leitmotif Luncheon: April 9 at 12pm

Ring Cycle Backstage Tours: April 14 – May 1 at 10 & 11am

The Music of Wagner: April 14, 21 & 28 at 12pm

The Philosophy of the Ring: April 14, 21 & 28 at 2:30pm

Ring Creative Team Discussion: April 15 at 2pm

Brut Strength: April 16 & 23, May 1 at 12pm

Twilight Progressive Dinner: April 18 & 25 at 4pm, May 3 at 1:30pm

Maestro & Cast Discussion: April 22 & 30

The Flight of the Valkyries: April 13, 20 & 27

Longer! Louder! Wagner! April 15 – May 2


Important Resources:

Center for Disease Control Guide on Handwashing

Chicago Department of Public Health Coronavirus Updates

Frequently Asked Questions

RING Festival Cancellations: Frequently Asked Questions

Photo: Matthew Gilson