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Madison symphony to pay musicians for canceled performances

Madison symphony to pay musicians for canceled performances

Madison Symphony Orchestra hopes to return by fall

The Madison Symphony Orchestra, which will pay its contracted musicians for performances canceled during the COVID-19 pandemic, hopes to return to the Overture Hall stage in Downtown Madison in fall 2021.

Contracted musicians with the Madison Symphony Orchestra will receive a combined total of more than $1 million in relief payments from the orchestra to replace income they would have received had the organization’s 2020-21 performance season not been canceled.

Contributions from more than 700 individuals, a State of Wisconsin Cultural Organization Grant, previous board-approved funds and a second federal PPP loan helped the orchestra to commit a total of $1,023,474 to its Musicians’ Relief Fund, the longtime Madison arts organization announced Thursday.

More than half of orchestra subscribers who had bought tickets to the 2020-21 season also donated the cost of their tickets to the fund.

The 91 contracted musicians who originally were scheduled to perform in some or all of the orchestra’s 2020-21 concerts will benefit from the Musicians’ Relief Fund.

Since it was forced to cancel live performances last spring due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the orchestra has continued to offer the public free online programs, streamed organ concerts and other online performances.

The orchestra, which usually performs in Overture Hall at Overture Center for the Arts, presented “A Virtual Madison Symphony Christmas” in December, and hopes to return to a full season of live performances in the fall, said Richard Mackie, the orchestra’s executive director.

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