MINNEAPOLIS: The Guthrie Theater today announced two momentous changes to its 2021–22 Season performance calendar amid ongoing concerns due to the resurgence of COVID-19. The theatre will postpone this month’s planned production of A Raisin in the Sun to the late spring, and bump a planned spring production of Destiny of Desire off the calendar altogether.
In the case of Raisin, the theatre cited “recent COVID-19 cases among vaccinated members” of the company, as well as the rise of Omicron-related infections in Minnesota, for the postponement. Destiny of Desire, though not slated to run until April 30-June 5, has been cancelled outright because multiple artists in the company, facing their own slate of delayed or scotched productions, now have “scheduling conflicts.” The show was headed for a commercial production on Broadway, directed by Ruben Santiago-Hudson.
“The ongoing effects of the pandemic in our industry cannot be overstated,” said artistic director Joseph Haj in a statement. “And despite taking every available precaution, the Omicron variant has proven extremely difficult to navigate within a production schedule we outlined many months ago.” He added, “Given that health experts predict the COVID-19 surge may not peak in Minnesota until mid- to late January, we felt it prudent to reconsider our calendar. As difficult as these decisions may be, we stand by them as we continue to prioritize the health and safety of our artists, staff and audiences.”
The rest of the coming is scheduled to go on as planned: a February-to-April staging of The Tempest, directed by former Guthrie artistic director Joe Dowling, and summer productions of Kate Hamill’s new adaptation of Jane Austen’s Emma, directed by Meredith McDonough, and Lynn Nottage’s Sweat, directed by Tamilla Woodard.
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