The Metropolitan Opera (The Met) has reached an agreement with its orchestra, the last of its three largest unions to reach an agreement. The move paves a clearer path for the reopening of The Met’s 2021-22 season, with the scheduled premiere of Terence Blanchard’s Fire Shut Up in My Bones on Sept. 27. The production will be the first opera to appear on the Met’s stage in eighteen months. The agreement also includes a new chamber music series created by the Met’s Music Director, Canadian conductor & pianist and 2020 Rubies-honouree Yannick Nézet-Séguin.
The announcement follows a one-and-a half year shutdown resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, and will be commemorated with two free pre-season performances of Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 “Resurrection”, to take place in Damrosch Park.
Inspired by the orchestra’s entrepreneurial efforts during the pandemic, Nézet-Séguin is heading up the new chamber music series initiative, which includes six concerts at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall in the fall, and corresponding performances as part of Carnegie’s Citywide free programming initiative.
“The pandemic has caused pain and suffering for so many people, and in ways that will remain forever. And while we as musicians cannot make that pain go away, our art form is special in that it can provide moments of healing and catharsis to a spirit in need,” said Mr. Nézet-Séguin in a statement.
Both concerts at Damrosch Park are free and open to the public, with approximately 2,500 seats available. For greater detail on concert dates and tickets, and the upcoming season, click here.
In the announcement, the Met’s General Manager Peter Gelb said, “The members of the Met’s great orchestra have been through Herculean challenges during the 16 months of the shutdown, as we struggled to keep the company intact. Now, we look forward to rebuilding and returning to action.”