Nashville Symphony, TPAC announce two-year partnership with HCA Healthcare/TriStar Health to guide safe return to live performances

Collaboration to assess reopening, provide resources and build lasting confidence for artists, technicians, patrons and staff

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The nonprofit Tennessee Performing Arts Center (TPAC) and Nashville Symphony announce a two-year joint health and safety partnership with HCA Healthcare, one of the nation’s leading providers and healthcare services, and its TriStar Health affiliate based in Nashville to guide the safe reopening and return to live performances for these essential arts and cultural organizations in Middle Tennessee.

In addition to providing valuable financial support through a grant from the HCA Healthcare Foundation, HCA Healthcare/TriStar Health will serve as the “Official Health and Safety Partner” for both TPAC and the Symphony to build resilience in the performing arts community and deliver safe and enriching arts experiences for artists, musicians, patrons, staff and volunteers.

The partnership builds on decades-long relationships between the organizations and HCA Healthcare/TriStar Health, which has sponsored TPAC’s annual Broadway at TPAC series for 14 years and supported the presentation of more than 70 Broadway productions to 1.5 million people.

For the past seven years, the Symphony and HCA Healthcare/TriStar Health have partnered to offer the Legends of Music Series at Schermerhorn Symphony Center. Once performances are able to resume, the partnership will enter its eighth season.

HCA Healthcare/TriStar Health experts will work with TPAC and the Symphony on best practices for safely reopening TPAC venues and Schermerhorn Symphony Center and provide access to personal protective equipment (PPE) and rapid testing for each organization’s community of performers, patrons, staff and other personnel. 

Though its full scope will develop over time, the partnership’s initial focus will include:

  • Ongoing guidance from HCA Healthcare/TriStar Health medical and infectious disease experts on implementing effective health and safety operations;
  • An assessment of public, backstage and performance spaces to recommend physical changes that protect performers, technicians, patrons and staff;
  • Communications to the public on how they will safely return to performances at the James K. Polk Cultural Center (TPAC and its Resident Companies) and Schermerhorn Symphony Center (Nashville Symphony);
  • COVID-19 testing resources for artists and staff; and
  • Training and resources for staff in CPR, emergency preparedness, First Aid assistance and more.

By sustaining a safe environment for TPAC spaces, the partnership also will bring ballet, opera and professional theatre back to the community as TPAC is the performance home for Nashville Ballet, Nashville Opera and Nashville Repertory Theatre.

With arts education important to TPAC’s mission, the nonprofit also has asked HCA Healthcare/TriStar Health to coordinate on providing supplies and health education to schools participating in its programs, which serve approximately 45,000 students and teachers across Middle Tennessee each year. 

Each arts organization will create dedicated health and safety webpages and launch social media campaigns with ongoing tips from health experts to inform patrons about reopening. 

“As we look forward to returning from an extended intermission, our top priority is ensuring the more than 450,000 patrons, students and teachers we serve each year have complete confidence to enjoy meaningful and safe experiences with the arts,” says Jennifer Turner, TPAC President and CEO. “Partnering with HCA Healthcare/TriStar Health brings their expertise to that commitment and sets the stage for a rousing second act when we can again bring our community together through the arts. Health and safety will play an essential role in our response to COVID-19 and as an ongoing presence in society, and we foresee this as one of the most crucial partnerships in TPAC history.” 

“We are beyond grateful to HCA Healthcare/TriStar Health for expanding our partnership to provide critical resources and support as we plan for our reopening,” says Nashville Symphony President and CEO Alan Valentine. “Through their generosity and partnership, we are now taking our next steps toward providing our community with live music again. Their expertise will ensure that we are opening on the right timeline with proper precautions for our musicians, staff and patrons. We are confident that live music will once again fill our hall this year, and we’re elated to have the experts at HCA Healthcare/TriStar Health guide us in making that a reality.”

“It is our privilege to collaborate with Tennessee Performing Arts Center and the Nashville Symphony as a health and safety partner to ensure a safe reopening and return to live performances,” said Dr. Tama Van Decar, Chief Medical Officer, TriStar Health. “Through this collaboration, we will work to deliver safe experiences utilizing clinical resources and best practices in safety protocols, which will build lasting confidence for artists, patrons and staff. It is important that we focus on returning to these enriching live experiences to support the mental health and well-being of our Nashville community. There is a psychological benefit in being present, immersing ourselves and participating in shared artistic experiences.”

About TriStar Health

TriStar Health is the largest and most comprehensive healthcare provider in the region, comprised of ten hospitals, 21 imaging centers, 110 physician offices, four freestanding ERs, six outpatient surgery centers, 15 CareNow® Urgent Care centers and nine medical parks. TriStar Health provides the latest in clinical technology and innovative procedures while delivering the highest quality care. The TriStar Health network had over 2.1 million patient encounters last year. The network is supported by over 1,400 physicians and 10,000 employees – including more than 4,000 nurses – who, above all else, are committed to the care and improvement of human life. TriStar Health is an affiliate of HCA Healthcare, one of the nation’s leading providers of healthcare services. Learn more at

About Nashville Symphony 

The GRAMMY® Award-winning Nashville Symphony has earned an international reputation for its innovative programming and its commitment to performing, recording and commissioning works by America’s leading composers. The Nashville Symphony has released more than 30 recordings on Naxos, which have received 25 GRAMMY® nominations and 13 GRAMMY® Awards, making it one of the most active recording orchestras in the country. The orchestra also has released recordings on Decca, Deutsche Grammophon and New West Records, among other labels. With more than 140 performances annually, the orchestra offers a broad range of classical, pops and jazz, and children’s concerts, while its extensive education and community engagement programs reach 60,000 children and adults each year.

About Tennessee Performing Arts Center

Since 1980, the nonprofit Tennessee Performing Arts Center has welcomed more than 14 million audience members and served more than 1.8 million students, teachers and adults with performances at TPAC, teacher resources, professional development opportunities, classroom residencies and enrichment programs. Each year, TPAC serves several hundred thousand audience members with its HCA Healthcare/TriStar Health Broadway at TPAC series, a variety of special engagements, and the productions of three resident artistic companies – Nashville Ballet, Nashville Opera and Nashville Repertory Theatre. TPAC’s mission is to lead with excellence in the performing arts and arts education, creating meaningful and relevant experiences to enrich lives, strengthen communities and support economic vitality. Institutional sponsors for TPAC include Nissan North America, HCA Healthcare/TriStar Health and Coca-Cola. TPAC is funded in part by support from the Tennessee Arts Commission and the Metropolitan Nashville Arts Commission. For more information, visit