WESTPORT — The Westport Country Playhouse announced it is canceling its 2020 season due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“After careful consideration of public health guidelines and with the health and well-being of our audience members, patrons, artists and staff in mind, we have made the painful decision to postpone our 2020 season,” said an email from Mark Lamos, artistic director, and Michael Barker, managing director, on Tuesday.

“The curtain will not go up again until 2021, when we hope to present the originally scheduled 2020 programming — five mainstage plays featuring the reimagining of ‘Ain’t Misbehavin,’ five Script in Hand playreadings, and Family Festivities presentations for young audiences,” the email said. “We also look forward to once again giving the gift of time and space to playwrights, directors and casts in our New Works Initiative.”

Ticket holders will receive a separate email with instructions on how to request a refund, receive a credit for future events or donate the value of their tickets.

According to the email, the Playhouse furloughed half its staff but plans to bring them back for the 2021 season. It’s the Playhouse’s goal for the staff’s health insurance to continue without interruption, the email said.

“However, with no continuing (income) from ticket sales, we cannot survive unless we raise $1.6 million between now and Dec. 31, 2020,” the email said. “For those who are able, please make a donation to our Survival Fund.”

dj.simmons@hearstmediact.com

More Information

To donate to the Westport Country Playhouse’s Survival Fund, visit https://www.westportplayhouse.org/donate?sourceNumber=5342.