Western Canada’s largest Shakespeare festival has announced it will not be presenting a 2020 season this summer.

The Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival was scheduled to run from June 10th to September 26th at Vanier Park.

Due to the risks and unpredictability of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Festival has now decided to cancel its entire 31st Season.

“Our team has spent the past month in an intensive exploration of what might be possible for our season, given the impact of COVID-19” said Founding Artistic Director Christopher Gaze and Executive Director Claire Sakaki in a joint statement.

“Our first focus throughout has been the safety and well-being of our patrons, our staff and volunteers, our donors, sponsors and partners, and the greater community we serve and entertain. It has now become clear to us that if we stage a Festival in the Park this summer, we won’t be able to ensure the health and well-being of all those people who would gather together at our site and in turn, be in contact with others.”

“And so, we have made the deeply painful decision to cancel our Season. We know the impact it will have on so many people we care about – and we are heartsick about that – but we are sure that we are making the responsible and necessary choice.”

Patrons who had bought 2020 tickets and ticket Packs will have the value of their purchases honoured through a range of options including 2021 ticket credits, charitable tax-receipted donations, and full refunds.

Last modified: April 6, 2020

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