Jordan Hall, the historic concert hall located at Boston’s New England Conservatory, will remain closed to outside organizations until June 2021. The school shared its plans on Friday with groups that regularly rent the venue for their own performances.
During the academic year, Jordan Hall generally hosts student recitals as well as a steady schedule of concerts and shows by unaffiliated presenters. “Given the rapidly evolving public health environment, we have made the difficult but necessary decision to ensure that access and usage of our performance venues is preserved — first and foremost — for our students and faculty,” read a New England Conservatory statement released Monday afternoon.
New England Conservatory said the decision was made due to demand for renting the hall, which “given the anticipated need for social-distancing measures, will be greater than ever,” the statement read.
The closure leaves the Celebrity Series Boston, which just announced its 2020-2021 lineup last week, without a venue for at least a dozen performances next season. It also forces the midsize period orchestra Boston Baroque to rethink plans for 2020-21.
“We consider Jordan Hall a musical home and where we perform the vast majority of our season,” said Boston Baroque executive director Jennifer Hughes via phone on Monday. “Right now, we don’t have a venue.” Boston Baroque immediately pulled all tickets for its 2020-21 season from its website.
Jordan Hall is the first major Boston arts venue to face such a long closure, perhaps foreshadowing additional shutdowns in the city. So far, most Massachusetts museums, concert halls, and theaters have signaled their hope to reopen in late summer or fall. Late last month, the Boston Symphony Orchestra announced plans to open its 2020-21 season on Sept. 16 at Symphony Hall, located just one block from Jordan Hall.
Colleges and universities play an outsize role in the Boston arts scene, and these organizations moved quickly to shutter museums and performance venues while closing their campuses due to the spread of coronavirus. Jordan Hall and Harvard University’s Sanders Theatre were among the city’s first big arts venues to close to the general public in March.
New England Conservatory has not yet announced plans for the 2020-21 academic year, according to a coronavirus updates tab on its website. “While we do not yet have specific plans to share, I can assure you that the safety and wellness of our community remains our top priority,” wrote New England Conservatory president Andrea Kalyn in an April 23 statement. “Our return will be based on the guidance of public health officials.”
Diti Kohli can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter at @ditikohli_.