Boston Symphony Orchestra cancels concert dates in Europe due to COVID-19

"We must keep as our first priority the health and safety of everyone involved with the Boston Symphony Orchestra."

Andris Nelsons conducts a joint concert of the Boston Symphony Orchestra and Germany's visiting Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, Thursday, Oct. 31, 2019, at Symphony Hall in Boston. The BSO has canceled its European tour that had been scheduled for next month because of an increase in positive coronavirus cases among orchestra members. Despite health and safety protocols the orchestra said in a statement Monday, April 11, 2022 that 31 onstage musicians were affected after recent performances. AP Photo/Elise Amendola, File

The Boston Symphony Orchestra announced they would cancel their tour dates in Vienna, Leipzig, Hamburg, and Paris due to COVID-19 on Monday.

The group had 31 onstage musicians test positive for COVID, according to a statement. None of the cases have resulted in severe illness. Another contributing factor to the cancellation was an increase in COVID-19 cases in both Europe and the United States, and the potential for “travel disruption” on a tour that would span multiple cities.

“Given the ongoing presence of COVID, brought home by its unfortunate impact on a significant number of our own artists, we must keep as our first priority the health and safety of everyone involved with the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Sadly, the only prudent and responsible course of action is, with deep regret, to cancel the European tour,” said BSO President and CEO Gail Samuel.


The canceled dates span May 15–24. These dates were part of a larger “unique Strauss-focused tour” in partnership with Gewandhausorchester Leipzig from May 9–31 under conductor and music director Andris Nelsons.

“The tour of both the BSO and Gewandhausorchester Leipzig in Europe was an immense, unique, and innovative undertaking. I am so very sorry for all presenters and audience members who were looking forward to the BSO’s performances, and to all the wonderful teams who spent so much time and energy on making this dream a reality. Of course, I respect the decision and the circumstances surrounding it,” said Nelsons.

The group said they would monitor their policies to ensure the health and safety of those at Symphony Hall.

All performers are required to be vaccinated and boosted. Members of the choir and wind and brass sections are also tested for COVID-19 daily. String players are tested once a week.


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