“Since March 16, the activities of the Productions Internationales Albert Sarfati – like much of our profession – have come to a standstill. Unprecedented since 1948, when our office was founded by Albert Sarfati, unprecedented for the sector on an international scale.

Like everyone else, we have followed the cancellation instructions for all our productions and all our tours – in France and internationally – and since then have mainly tried to postpone the concerts of our artists for some in great difficulty.

Many were those, artists and performers, who overflowed with inventiveness during this period of confinement to try to entertain us virtually with the means at hand. Continue to exist, to transmit, to share. Cancellations followed one after another and our new season, which was ready to be communicated to you in the spring, was nipped in the bud before it even saw the light of day. We have been very touched by all the kind and friendly messages of support that have reached us.

As the start of the school year looms, many of you have asked us about the coming season. Here is what we can tell you about it today in full transparency. As a private producer working mainly with international companies and artists, we are faced with the double penalty of not being able to know if we can consider the realization of our Parisian projects announced at the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées and at the Philharmonie de Paris (with what health regulations? Maintaining a viable economy?) and whether our foreign companies and artists will be able to be authorized to leave their countries and cross borders without quarantine.

Some companies announced for this season have unfortunately had to cancel their visit and we have worked intensively to offer you new projects. But the question is not so much to find projects, many artists and companies are united and impatient to be back on stage for live performances. The major question is to do everything to succeed in finding a way to bring back the live performance into existence in the face of this major international health crisis.

For this fall, the complete Bach suites with Yo Yo Ma at the Philharmonie de Paris had to be canceled but is postponed to June 2021. The week announced for the centenary of the Ballets Suédois with the Royal Swedish Ballet in October also had to be canceled but without the possibility of postponement. However, during this same period, we are going to offer you a special evening devoted to Dance. This will allow our French Dance companies, which have suffered so much during this period, to be in the spotlight on stage at the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées. If Russia and the European Union open their borders, Boris Berezovsky’s recital and the “Chanel” evening with Svetlana Zakharova and the soloists of the Bolshoi Ballet should take place. On November 21 the Evgeny Kissin’s recital should also take place.

So much conditional leaves quite puzzled, but this is our daily life on a small scale, knowing that all performing arts are now facing the same issues. And we could add to that our questioning on the extent of your appetite to taste live performance again after this long period of diet … We believe in it, we have to!, because without a certain hunger of the audience, all this could not exist again!

According to André Malraux, “culture is what makes Man something other than an accident of the universe”. Let’s hope he’s got it right and that Man can also repair these accidents in the universe of which he is sometimes the only cause.”

Vony Sarfati