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Boston Ballet institutes furloughs through July

Boston Ballet in George Balanchine's "Serenade"©The George Balanchine Trust; photo by Gene Schiavone, courtesy of Boston Ballet

The Boston Ballet announced on Friday that it will furlough staff after canceling the remainder of its spring season last week. COVID-19 compromised 40 percent of the organization’s annual revenue, resulting in $8 million in expected losses.

“Due to these unforeseen circumstances, Boston Ballet leadership is forced to make the difficult decision, beginning immediately” a statement read.

More than 500 people are employed by the ballet in Boston, Newton, and Marblehead. Employees will be furloughed in five waves “based on their function and available work,” according to the statement. Boston Ballet will pay 100 percent of health insurance for furloughed staffers. Most staff can expect to return to work on July 27 when rehearsals for August’s “Carmen” begin.


As part of these cost-saving measures, artistic director Mikko Nissinen and executive director Max Hodges will take a voluntary 50 percent salary reduction for the next four months.

The ballet is pursuing other financial support, such as government aid and contributions from patrons.

Diti Kohli can be reached at Follow her on Twitter at @ditikohli_.

Diti Kohli can be reached at her @ditikohli_.