Now Glimmerglass is gone

Now Glimmerglass is gone


norman lebrecht

May 05, 2020

Press release:

The Glimmerglass Festival, the central New York opera and music theater festival, will not host any live performances in summer 2020 due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

There will be some video activity.



  • Grumpy says:

    I don’t understand why they don’t cancel also 2021 and 2022 edition as well since I am not going to go out of the house until a vaccine is available and there are no viruses of any kind left in the world.

    • Saxon Broken says:

      Great for you. I am really pleased that you have got your two years supply of baked beans and toilet paper. And that you will spend your time reading “John the Revelator” awaiting the end of the world.

      Some of us aren’t quite as terrified as you. And understand that the risks are quite small (but there are risks). And understand that in many areas we might be able to return to something near normality by the end of the summer.

      Of course, you don’t have to join the rest of us having fun when the lockdown ends. Feel free to stay cooped up inside.

  • Marshall says:

    Zambello kept hoping, but bowed to the inevitable. Realistically we all knew it would have to be cancelled.

    Educational Programs, Town Halls Go Virtual

    Glimmerglass Festival, as Glimmerglass Opera, has held a summer season annually since 1975. (Glimmerglass Festival photo)
    COOPERSTOWN – The Glimmerglass Festival will not host any live performances this summer, according to a release sent a few minutes ago.

    “As theater people, we are accustomed to problem solving,” Artistic & General Director Francesca Zambello said. “We had already adjusted plans and schedules in the hope we might be able to welcome company members and audience members for a Festival this summer.

    “But in considering the health and safety of our artists and staff, and following New York State and CDC recommendations, we must now instead focus on how we can provide an opportunity for people to come together around song and story — without coming together in person,” she said.

    Following Governor Andrew Cuomo’s directive that attractions drawing a large number of visitors would not be permitted, the Glimmerglass Festival Board of Trustees voted to cancel any live performances at the theater in Cooperstown.

    However, the Festival will continue their educational programs, including the 2020 Young Artists program, Summer Internship Program, and its local Youth Opera Program.

    “Public performances are only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to our summer activities,” Zambello said. “Behind the scenes, the company invests an enormous amount of energy in training the young people who make up the future of the art form. These include both group workshops and one-on-one mentoring from established professionals, and the Glimmerglass team is working hard to develop a robust selection of virtual opportunities for this summer.”

    Additionally, the company will take its Town Hall series virtual, starting with a Live Conversation with Zambello and Festival Music Director Joseph Colaneri. The Festival directors will discuss the role of an arts organization in a rapidly changing environment and will take the opportunity to answer questions.

    More information regarding this event will be shared at a later date. Additional special guests will include Sister Helen Prejean, Tana Ross, and others to be announced.

    “A huge part of the Festival’s mission is to inspire dialogue around meaningful issues through storytelling and music,” Zambello said. “That is another reason we have endeavors like our performances at Attica prison, or our recent world premiere ‘Blue,’ discussing current issues.
    I am very excited about the prospect of bringing our Town Hall discussions to a potentially wider audience.”

    Ticket buyers to the 2020 Festival can donate the value of their tickets back to the company, which will be used toward the Festival’s ongoing professional education initiatives and supporting 2020 company members, or receive a refund for the face value of their tickets.

  • Pat says:

    The Des Moines Metro Opera has also quit for this year.