The Broadway League previously said that shows would go on as normal, despite a front-of-house staff member at a theater testing positive for COVID-19. They promised greater care given to sanitizing theaters and even offered $50 tickets to many popular shows to entice audiences to keep attending. However, closures were no longer at their discretion after an order from NY Governor Andrew Cuomo.
The closure will go into effect tonight at 5 p.m. and shows are set to resume on April 13.
The industry could lose well over $100 million, and some shows may not re-open after the hiatus. The accommodation, hospitality, and food industries will be affected by the resulting drop in tourism — Broadway brought 14.62 million people to the Times Square area in 2019.
Before the announcement, Moulin Rouge! The Musical had canceled today’s performances due to what’s rumored to be a cast member’s potential exposure.
This is the first time Broadway theaters will go dark for a prolonged period since the stagehand strike of 2007, when theaters were shuttered for 19 days.
[The Theater Community Reacts]
Harsh and heartbreaking to the industry but necessary. https://t.co/RSdEq9pUtp— Audra McDonald (@AudraEqualityMc) March 12, 2020
We will rise again as artists. Now is the time to be civil leaders and proactive helpers & nurturers. My finances may be emptied but my heart, body & soul KNOWS this is the right thing to do for ALL. https://t.co/kR6qsizacO— Stephanie J. Block (@StephanieJBlock) March 12, 2020
I think this is the right move to keep everyone safe. I hope I can get my plants! https://t.co/UABdE95l91— Kerry Butler (@KerryButlerNyc) March 12, 2020
Sending love to everyone— casts, bands, crews, ushers, fans, artists, producers, hell even critics 😉. I know how heartbreaking and hard this will be for so many... but I’m relieved to see some leadership that puts people before profits. 💘💘💘 https://t.co/XViiNzrErj— Anaïs Mitchell (@anaismitchell) March 12, 2020
My heart is with all my Broadway friends and I'm very thankful that safety is being put first. https://t.co/R5h1lUxXoO— Erich Bergen (@erichbergen) March 12, 2020
Smart move. Stay safe. Stay home. Wash your hands and keep positive. We’ll all come out the other side ok. https://t.co/5SLCNHc3wB— Eddie Perfect Official (@TheEddiePerfect) March 12, 2020
Holding our community right now. Wow. https://t.co/eikbAhjJwu— DonnettaLaviniaGrays (@DonnettaLavinia) March 12, 2020