CHAMBER MUSIC PLUS ON HIATUS
posted by James Reel
Chamber Music Plus has just announced that it will cancel this season and regroup; the situation is being called a sabbatical. Here's the letter that has just been released by pianist Sanda Schuldmann, Chamber Music Plus's executive director ...
After eight great seasons of wonderful Sunday afternoons at the Berger, Harry and I have arrived at a very difficult decision. We will not present the 2011-12 season, Rhythms of LIFE at the Berger. This decision is not any easy one for us, but it is essential for our well-being, and ultimately in how best we may serve you our loyal and caring audience in future years.
Harry and I have presented forty consecutive seasons of Chamber Music PLUS, thirty-two in Connecticut, eight in Arizona, and six of these seasons we shuttled back and forth between Connecticut and Arizona doing concurrent series in both states. One must possess ‘a fire in the belly’ to live up to high standards, ours and yours, and we simply are in need of a break, a hiatus, to reconsider our futures, and to re-invigorate ourselves for that future.
Though we pre-sold more advanced subscriptions than ever before for the 2011-12 season, (thank-you for your vote of confidence), the economic realities of state, regional and foundation funding is nearing zero, and this makes it near impossible to maintain the level of excellence you have become accustomed to. We are confronted with worrying more about raising enough monies to pay for the productions, and to pay us a minimum wage, than in making the best art possible. We ask you for your understanding that we need a sabbatical year every four decades!
We ended last season on as high a note as one might imagine: André Watts, Michael York, in a world premiere from Harry. We wish to remain at that high level, and so we need a bit of breathing room to look at the options available to do so that make sense for all concerned.
For those of you who have been with us since our Arizona inception, you’ve witnessed over 30 new works and such international luminaries as Lynn Redgrave, Lou Gossett, Jr., André Watts, Jasmine Guy, Elke Sommer – the list is long and prestigious. Harry now has the opportunity to bring many of these works first witnessed at the Berger to audiences throughout the country, opportunities that come about once in a lifetime. So we ask your permission to allow us to take the coming year to restructure and reconsider new approaches and opportunities for what we can do here in Tucson and nationally.
We fully intend to keep you abreast of our adventures and to provide you with information on all future local performances. We hope you will take pride in knowing that you helped us get to where we are and will cheer us on in the future.
Your tickets will be fully refunded to you and checks will start going out within the next week. This will take some time so please bear with us.
We thank our Board of Directors who back this decision 100%, our dedicated volunteers, and above all YOU our beloved audience, whom we hope we will see in the years to come.
Chamber Music Plus