Back To Top

SPO member contracts COVID-19, taught student related to church infection cluster

Orchestra member contracted the virus after teaching student related to church infection cluster


The Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra canceled its concerts slated for this week, after one of its members tested positive for COVID-19.

The member contracted the virus after giving private lessons to a Seoul Arts High School student related to the Sarang Jeil Church virus outbreak.

According to the SPO, the orchestra member was tested for the virus on Saturday, after being informed of having come in close contact with a person who had contracted the virus. The following day, the member was confirmed to have the virus.

In response, the SPO canceled Saturday’s Liberation Day concert as well as a performance Sunday in Gangwon Province. On Tuesday, the orchestra canceled Thursday’s and Friday’s concerts at the Seoul Arts Center, which were to have been led by Music Director Osmo Vanska.

Vanska recently wrapped up his two-week self-quarantine in Seoul after flying in from the US for the concerts.

The SPO was slated to perform at Classic Revolution 2020 Seoul Beethoven, a classical music festival organized by the Lotte Foundation for Arts, on Aug. 30, but the performance has been canceled, too.

All orchestral performances at the music festival have been canceled, due to the recent spread of the virus.

The SPO offices at the Sejong Center for the Performing Arts in Gwanghwamun in central Seoul were shut down for disinfection Saturday.

Around 60 other members were also tested, as they had rehearsed with the musician who tested positive. The SPO said Tuesday afternoon it had received reports on the results of most of those members, but that none of them had tested positive.

Figures released Tuesday by the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention showed 138 new cases traced to Sarang Jeil Church in northern Seoul, marking a total of 457 cases related to the church nationwide. Of the cases, 432 are in the Greater Seoul region, which includes Gyeonggi Province and Incheon.

By Im Eun-byel (