For the second time in its 135-year history, Boston Pops has canceled an entire season of concerts. Originally planned for May 6-June 13, the spring 2020 season was set to celebrate conductor Keith Lockhart’s 25th anniversary with the orchestra.
Canceled concerts included a glitzy tribute to George Gershwin (Lockhart’s favorite American composer) and a concert version of the musical “Ragtime.” Also on the calendar was a feature presentation of “Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back." Boston Pops will now mark Lockhart’s anniversary with its 2021 spring season. In the meanwhile, a spokesperson said, Lockhart will remain at home in the Boston area with his wife and two children.
“We all need to play our part in putting the scourge behind us, and it will eventually be behind us,” Lockhart said in a statement. “The world will need us, it will need our music, it will need to gather in community, and it will need the Boston Pops.”
As an organization, the Boston Symphony Orchestra has already canceled its remaining 2019-20 BSO season concerts. No announcements have been made concerning the 2020 Tanglewood summer season. Nor does Tuesday’s announcement affect the annual July 4 Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular. According to the statement, the organization will clarify its plans for those events in mid-May.
With concerts canceled, BSO fans can connect with recordings and musician home videos via www.bso.org/athome. Boston Pops content will start appearing there in early May.
Boston Pops last canceled a season of concerts in 1890 when it was unable to attain a liquor license. Because of the financial impact of this year’s cancellations, the organization asks patrons to consider donating any tickets they’ve already purchased. Refunds and exchanges can be made by calling 617-266-1200.