Sarasota Opera is among the latest arts groups to announce changes due to COVID-19.

More changes to the performing arts fall season lineup—not unexpected due to COVID-19 concerns—come with the announcement by the Sarasota Opera that it is cancelling its mainstage production of Don Giovanni, originally set to open in October, and the Sarasota Youth Opera’s production of The Hobbit, first planned for November. The “Night in Italy” concert, set for Nov. 7, and the Concert at Noon on Nov. 13 are also cancelled.

The Taste of Downtown event, which raises funds for the Youth Opera, has also been removed from the calendar in September, but the company hopes to continue with it in another form.

Instead, Sarasota Opera’s fall season will now feature concerts with resident artists. A concert with singers and piano onstage at the Sarasota Opera House will be live-streamed on Nov. 13. (If conditions allow for an in-person audience, that announcement will be made later.) The Opera Mobile, which has offered residents artists performing at different locations through Sarasota, is slated to return in November, and, if conditions allow, there will also be outdoor concerts at various venues.

Maestro Jesse Martins, soprano Hanna Brammer and baritone Alex Boyd performed in the Opera Mobile earlier this year; the company plans to continue the mobile's outdoor sings at various venues this fall.

The Curtain Raiser Dinner is still scheduled to take place Oct. 25, depending on conditions then. And the opera company hopes to begin a modified HD at the Opera House and Classic Movies at the Opera House series sometime in September or October.

The Sarasota Youth Opera fall semester begins virtually this month, with an alternative Youth Opera presentation planned now for spring 2021. No changes have been made to the Winter Opera Festival, which is set to run from Feb. 6 through March 21, at this time; single ticket sales will begin Sept. 1.

Executive director Richard Russell says, “Our intention is that opera remains in the hearts and minds of our supporters, our audience, and our community through this difficult time.” To continue to stay up to date on the opera’s schedule, visit sarasotaopera.org.

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