Broadway theatres will go dark beginning 5 PM, March 12, by order of Governor Andrew Cuomo. Performances will resume the week of April 13.
The announcement comes as venues and performing arts organizations around New York City and the country have announced closures of their own amid rising concerns about the global coronavirus pandemic.
“Our top priority has been and will continue to be the health and well-being of Broadway theatregoers and the thousands of people who work in the theatre industry every day, including actors, musicians, stagehands, ushers, and many other dedicated professionals,” said Charlotte St. Martin, President of the Broadway League, in a statement. “Broadway has the power to inspire, enrich and entertain, and together we are committed to making that vital spirit a reality. Once our stages are lit again, we will welcome fans back with open arms so that they can continue to experience the joy, heart, and goodwill that our shows so passionately express every night.”
Governor Andrew Cuomo announced in a press conference that no gatherings of more than 500 people will be allowed, excepting schools, hospitals, mass transit, and nursing homes. That ban will be effective beginning 5 PM, March 13. For gatherings under 500, the seating capacity will be cut in half.
Ticketholders should contact their point of purchase regarding refunds or exchanges. Tickets for a performance during the March 12–April 12 period purchased on Telecharge and Ticketmaster will be automatically refunded. No word yet on when the theatres will resume operations. SIX, the musical reimagining of Henry VIII's wives, was set to open tonight, while Lincoln Center Theatre's Flying Over Sunset was to have played its first preview. Revivals of Caroline, or Change and Plaza Suite were to have begun previews March 13, while A Soldier's Play and The Inheritance had been scheduled to play their final performances March 15.
This is the first time Broadway theatres will go dark for a prolonged period since the stagehand strike of 2007, when theatres were shuttered for 19 days.