COVID-19 UPDATES

The New Zealand Symphony Orchestra is closely monitoring the ongoing situation regarding COVID-19 (novel coronavirus). The following updates and Frequently Asked Questions will be reviewed and updated as new information is available.

UPDATE: 15 April - Important update to NZSO concerts to 31 July

Dear Supporter, 

With the ongoing uncertainty due to the COVID-19 situation, we regret that all scheduled New Zealand Symphony Orchestra concerts and associated events until 31 July, 2020 have been cancelled.

When restrictions on public events were first announced, we suspended concerts in March and April to later dates. We planned to resume our concerts with Emperor in Dunedin and Christchurch on 21 and 22 May.

However, at all COVID-19 Alert Levels there are likely to be restrictions on public events and admission of overseas artists entering New Zealand, making it prohibitively difficult for the NZSO to present its scheduled concert performances through to 31 July.

Therefore, we regrettably cancel the following concerts: Mavericks, Devotion, Wai, Emperor, Provocateurs, Idyllic, NYO Leningrad, Rebels and Kia Kotahi.

I know that many of you were looking forward to enjoying this diverse range of concerts, as was every one of our guest artists, conductors, NZSO and NZSO National Youth Orchestra players. We’re working hard to present still some of the same projects and to bring some of the same artists to New Zealand in the future.

The NZSO remains committed to ensuring the longevity and sustainability of your Orchestra. We thank you, our Partners and Donors for your understanding and loyal, ongoing support during these uncertain times.

If you are an NZSO Subscriber, you may choose to hold the value of your ticket as credit to use towards other concerts or towards your 2021 subscription. You may also choose to donate the value of your ticket to the NZSO Foundation, to help us keep the music going. I thank you in advance if you choose to donate during this uncertain period. You are also eligible for a refund if you prefer.

An email requesting you to select your preferred option will be sent to you in the coming weeks. We encourage patrons to wait to hear from us before getting in touch while we work through this process.

If you purchased your tickets from a ticketing agency, they will be in touch with you soon to confirm their particular refund process. If you purchased online or by credit card, this process will be largely automatic. They will contact you if they require further information. 

Our mission is to share great music, even if you cannot join us in the concert hall.

You can still stay connected with your NZSO through our Engage@Home programme. This includes digital premieres of our innovative Play Our Part series of at-home performances by NZSO players every Wednesday at 7.30pm, On Demand NZSO concert performances, and much more. Visit live.nzso.co.nz, youtube.com/nzsymphonyorchestra and follow us on facebook.com/newzealandsymphonyorchestra, Instagram.com/nzsymphonyorchestra and twitter.com/nzso.

Kia Kaha.

Peter Biggs
TE KAIHAUTŪ O TE TIRA PŪORO O AOTEAROA 
NZSO INTERIM CHIEF EXECUTIVE

UPDATE: 25 March - NZSO to premiere new online performance tonight at 7.30pm

At times like these, we all must Play Our Part. The New Zealand Symphony Orchestra will still perform online for all New Zealanders tonight at 7.30pm, Wed 25 March at nzso.co.nz/live after adapting our planned free livestream performance for the new COVID-19 restrictions.

NZSO Concertmaster Vesa-Matti Leppänen and several Section Principals will each playing one of their favourite pieces of music from home. Pianist Stephen De Pledge, who performed with the NZSO earlier this month, has also been filmed playing one of JS Bach’s famous Goldberg Variations.

Joining Vesa-Matti Leppänen and Stephen De Pledge for Play Our Part will be Section Principal Cellist Andrew Joyce, Section Principal Harpist Carolyn Mills, Section Principal Flautist Bridget Douglas with other players to be confirmed.

Play Our Part

CAROLYN MILLS, Section Principal Harp
JS BACH arr. Carolyn MillsGoldberg Variations I. Aria

VESA-MATTI LEPPÄNEN, Concertmaster
JS BACH – Violin Partita No.2 in D minor III. Sarabande, IV. Gigue

ANDREW JOYCE, Section Principal Cello
Traditional arr. Andrew JoyceEl cant dels ocells

BRIDGET DOUGLAS, Section Principal Flute
JS BACH – Partita in A Minor for Solo Flute III. Sarabande, IV. Bourrée anglaise

STEPHEN DE PLEDGE, Guest Soloist Fortepiano
JS BACH – Goldberg Variations I. Aria

Samuel Jacobs, Section Principal Horn
Britten – Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings I. Prologue

Play Our Part will premiere for free at nzso.co.nz/live 7.30pm tonight and can be viewed via smart TV, mobile phone, tablet or computer.

We’ll see you there.

UPDATE: 24 March - Goldberg Variations Live Stream and COVID-19 update

Due to the latest restrictions put in place by the New Zealand Government in response to COVID-19, we’re now unable to present the live stream of JS Bach’s Goldberg Variations as planned this Wednesday, 25 March.

The health and wellbeing of our musicians and support staff is our priority at this time, so from tomorrow, 24 March, the NZSO offices and associated venues are closed until further notice.

While staying at home and social distancing are very important at this time, we will keep the music going. We know that people still need to be connected and it will be just as important over the next several weeks. Because of this, we’re still committed to bring music to you and we’re now working through the best way to do this online and through other channels. Thanks to digital technology there are many innovative ways we can still bring music into your homes wherever you are.

Our support teams are working from home over the next few weeks so if you have questions about your 2020 Season subscription you can still contact our Ticketing Office at ticketing@nzso.co.nz or call 0800 479 674 between 10am-4pm Mon-Fri.

We’re also continuing to work hard to reschedule each of the concerts we suspended in March and April to later dates. However, ticket holders will have the option of a refund if they wish. For ticket holders who can’t exchange tickets but want to support the Orchestra, they can donate part or all of the value of their ticket to the NZSO. If you purchased tickets to an NZSO concert through a ticketing outlet please contact them directly.

Please follow the our website, Facebook page, Instagram and Twitter, and watch out for emails from us as we keep you up to date with our online activities.

UPDATE: 21 March - NZSO ENGAGE@Home launches concerts and other activities online

To ensure we’re still presenting world class music to New Zealanders, we’re launching NZSO ENGAGE@Home, bringing concerts and other activities to you online. Our first performance is
JS Bach's Goldberg Variations Wed, 25 March Livestreaming at 7.30pm

Click here to find out more

UPDATE: 16 March – NZSO suspends concerts due to COVID-19 restrictions

The New Zealand Symphony Orchestra has suspended all concert and associated activity until May.

This follows the Government’s directive today banning public events or mass gatherings of more than 500 people.

The NZSO was to have performed Mavericks in Christchurch and Dunedin on 20 and 21 March, and  Devotion in Wellington and Auckland on 3 and 4 April. The other concerts postponed are: Wai in Wellington and Auckland on 18 and 21 April and Emperor in Tauranga, Hamilton and Napier 22-24 April.

The NZSO will endeavour to reschedule each of the concerts to later dates. However, ticket holders will have the option of a refund if they wish. For ticket holders who can’t exchange tickets but want to support the Orchestra, they can donate part or all of the value of their ticket to the NZSO.

NZSO Interim Chief Executive Peter Biggs says the Orchestra’s No. 1 priority is the health and safety of its audiences, players and staff, and performing partners. Most NZSO concerts have audiences of well over 500 people.

“The NZSO has been keeping a close eye every day on developments regarding COVID-19 and at every step following guidelines issued by the Ministry of Health. We will be rigorously following the Government’s directive until it is lifted.”

Mr Biggs says while the concerts are rescheduled the NZSO will use other ways to bring world-class orchestral music to New Zealanders. It will include more live broadcasts of concerts and live streaming some performances on multiple platforms. The NZSO was working with its strategic partner RNZ to make it happen.

“RNZ will support our strategic partner the NZSO as much as possible through this challenging period,” says RNZ Chief Executive Paul Thompson.

“We will work with the Orchestra to broadcast live and recorded performances across all available platforms and help keep the NZSO’s connections with its audiences strong and ongoing.”

 Mr Biggs says the NZSO is heartened that it can work with RNZ to bring music to New Zealanders while concerts are suspended. “In extraordinary circumstances such as this, music becomes even more important for people. They still need it in their lives.”

NZSO subscribers will be contacted to discuss ticket options. All other ticket holders should contact the ticketing agency from where they purchased their tickets.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Why has the NZSO cancelled concert and associated activity until August 2020?

In March 2020 the New Zealand Government banned public events and mass gatherings to reduce the spread of COVID-19. There is no time limit on how long the directive will last.

Which concerts have been cancelled?

Mavericks, Devotion, Wai, Emperor, Provocateurs, Idyllic, NYO Leningrad, Rebels and Kia Kotahi.

Will the cancelled concerts go ahead at a later date?

We’re working hard to present some of the same projects and to bring some of the same artists to New Zealand in the future.

What is the NZSO doing until concerts and associated activity resumes?

We continue to bring world-class orchestral music to New Zealanders. You can still stay connected with us through our Engage@Home programme, which features weekly streaming premieres of performances, On Demand content and more at live.nzso.co.nz

To find out more, sign up for our monthly e-newsletter eNotes nzso.co.nz/sign-up-to-enotes/ and follow the NZSO on facebook.com/newzealandsymphonyorchestra, Instagram.com/nzsymphonyorchestra and twitter.com/nzso

New Zealand moves to Alert Level 2 on 14 May.  What will change for the NZSO and audiences?

The Ministry of Health says under Alert Level 2 mass gatherings and public events of more than 100 people are not allowed, so we won’t resume live concerts. However, Alert Level 2 does mean our players, while maintaining social distancing, can play together. This means new opportunities for us to stream and live stream performances to the nation.

Under Alert Level 2 will the NZSO’s Wellington office re-open to the public for ticket enquiries?

Yes. The office will be open to the public on Thursdays and Fridays, 10am-4pm from 21 May.

Can I get a refund for the cancelled concerts?

If you are an NZSO Subscriber, you may choose to hold the value of your ticket as credit to use towards other concerts or towards your 2021 subscription. You may also choose to donate the value of your ticket to the NZSO Foundation, to help us keep the music going. We thank you in advance if you choose to donate during this uncertain period. You are also eligible for a refund if you prefer.

An email requesting you to select your preferred option has been sent. We encourage patrons to wait to hear from us before getting in touch while we work through this process.

If you purchased your tickets from a ticketing agency, they will be in touch with you soon to confirm their particular refund process. If you purchased online or by credit card, this process will be largely automatic. They will contact you if they require further information.

What is the NZSO doing to keep patrons safe?

We are in contact with each venue where we perform and we are being updated on what extra precautionary measures each venue is taking, such as additional hand sanitisers and disinfecting areas within each venue that many people use.

The venues are following Ministry of Health guidelines.

How is the NZSO tracking COVID-19?

We continue to monitor the global situation, following the guidelines and daily updates issued by the Ministry of Health.

How does the NZSO plan to notify patrons regarding concert changes due to the COVID-19?

In the event of a change or further cancellation of planned events, we will notify subscription ticket buyers before the event via email. If you bought your ticket from a ticketing agency, the ticketing agency will contact you.

If you need to exchange a ticket and are an NZSO subscriber, contact NZSO Ticketing at 0800 479 674 or ticketing@nzso.co.nz. Otherwise, contact the ticketing agency where you purchased the ticket.

Additionally, we will include updates on the NZSO Facebook and Twitter accounts and our website on any changes or cancellations.

I feel unwell. Should I attend a concert I have a ticket for?

The Ministry of Health advice for anyone who feels unwell is to not attend a public event. If you are an NZSO subscriber you can exchange your Podium Series concert ticket for another Podium Series concert. Contact ticketing@nzso.co.nz or call 0800 479 674. If you purchased your ticket from a ticketing agency please contact the agency directly. Refunds will only be issued in the event of a cancellation.

I don’t feel safe in public spaces, may I have a refund?

If you are an NZSO Subscriber you can exchange your Podium Series concert ticket for another Podium Series concert. Contact ticketing@nzso.co.nz or call 0800 479 674. If you purchased your ticket from a ticketing agency please contact the agency directly. Refunds will only be issued in the event of a cancellation.

What will the NZSO do if a guest artist is unable to perform?

In the event that a guest artist is unable to perform due to restricted air travel or illness, we will do our best to replace the artist and notify all ticket buyers of the change.

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