The Eutin Festival is on the verge of a historical caesura: for the first time since 1951 it will not present any performances on the lake stage in summer.
What a pity: The Eutin Festival has to cancel all performances of the 2020 season due to the Corona crisis. Learn more
"Because of the Corona crisis, we have to cancel the performances of the 70th season completely, to our deepest regret," explained Managing Director Falk Herzog today (15 April).
This decision was extremely difficult for all those involved. "We are aware that many people are now very disappointed. But the development left us no choice. It is now clear that we will all have to live with severe restrictions on public events for some time to come," said Herzog.
The reasonable precautions taken by the state were one reason for the cancellation, he said. "The other is our own responsibility to ensure that we do not expose our predominantly older visitors to any health hazards. And no one wants to risk that in case of a suspected infection our international ensemble will have to be quarantined and that the schedule cannot be maintained," Herzog emphasized.
According to him, the cancellation is all the more painful as all the omens up to the end of March pointed to another outstanding season. The artistic preparation of the productions "A Cage Full of Fools" and "Madama Butterfly" as well as the concerts went smoothly and raised great expectations. Also with the audience: "We have now sold 12,500 tickets, 15 percent more than last year. Experience has shown that this trend could have brought us more than 35,000 visitors during the season", he said.
The non-profit cultural enterprise has prepared several ways to offset the value of tickets already purchased. Herzog: "The most important thing for the festival is the trust of the audience. Under no circumstances do we want to disappoint that. That's why we inform all customers directly about the cancellation and offer them a refund as a gesture of goodwill," Herzog stressed.
However, the Opera Barn would like as many ticket buyers as possible to choose other options. For example, the option of converting bookings into vouchers for future seasons. The programme for next season on the Seebühne has already been largely determined: Weber's opera "Der Freischütz" and Bernstein's musical "West Side Story" are to be performed then.
As the managing director said, the willingness of customers to donate all or part of their ticket money to the festival out of solidarity is of course most welcome during this time. It has not yet been decided which public assistance the Eutin Festival can count on to cover the costs already incurred for the 2020 season.
Falk Herzog: "I have great confidence in the will of the state government that cultural enterprises in Schleswig-Holstein will not have to fear for their existence through Corona. And I am very grateful to our patron, Minister President Daniel Günther, for his appeal to support the Festival to the best of his ability now. We will also do everything in our power to carry on our tradition.
The fact that the cancellation was made two months before the scheduled start of the season was also due to the time needed to set up the venue. This week at the latest, the construction of the basic stage as well as the sound and lighting equipment should have begun so that everything would have been ready for the planned rehearsal start on 18 May.
Even a later start to the season, for example at the end of July, would not have been able to save the season. Herzog: "We simply need a certain number of performances for the necessary production effort, so that we are not overwhelmed by a deficit in the end".
Colourful entertainment, great emotions - this is the enormous emotional range promised by director Tobias Materna for the production of the musical "A Cage Full of Fools" at the Eutin Festival.
The Korean baritone Hyunkyum Kim won the Eutin Festival prize of honour. Hilary Griffiths, Artistic Director Classical Music at the Festival, congratulated the 28-year-old singer on this success in the finale of the Maritim Music Prize.