The Hollywood Bowl 2020 summer season is canceled, the LA Philharmonic Association confirms.
This is the first time the Hollywood Bowl will close in its 98-year history. Many expected the LA Philharmonic Association to make the decision shortly, though that doesn’t lessen the blow for music-loving Los Angelenos. California Governor Gavin Newsom says he doesn’t see concerts returning before 2021.
The Philharmonic Association says it will experience devastating financial losses. It means a budget shortfall of $80 million will result from the closure of three venues.
“To mitigate these losses, the LA Phil must now take additional steps to address the financial impact caused by the pandemic and is furloughing approximately 25% of its full-time non-union workforce,” the announcement reads. The LA Phil is also laying off seasonal Hollywood Bowl employees, with cost savings measures continuing through the summer.
The Hollywood Bowl, the Ford, and Walt Disney Hall are all going dark because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Los Angeles County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl says the decision was hard, but the best choice for everyone. “This decision makes me heartsick for all the county residents who have made the Hollywood Bowl and the Ford a treasured ritual of each summer,” she says.
The LA Phil is launching a $35 million “Play Your Part” campaign. All donations will support the Association’s ongoing operations and programs, including the Los Angeles Youth Orchestra. Hollywood Bowl ticketholders have the option of donating their tickets back to the LA Phil.
Chad Smith, the Association’s CEO, says the Association is “doing what is necessary to ensure that we are all here for the next century.” The LA Phil will continue to monitor the COVID-19 pandemic situation and reassess as necessary.
Expect more closures as many health experts warn that live events will be the last to return. It may be 2021 and after a vaccine before people feel comfortable sharing large spaces in large crowds again.