NEW YORK (WCBS 880) — Broadway curtains will not be rising again in 2020.
The Broadway League announced Monday that performances in New York City will be suspended through the remainder of the year due to COVID-19.
Theatres are now offering refunds and exchanges for tickets purchased for all performances through Jan. 3, 2021.
"The Broadway experience can be deeply personal but it is also, crucially, communal," said Chairman of the Board of The Broadway League Thomas Schumacher. "The alchemy of 1,000 strangers bonding into a single audience fueling each performer on stage and behind the scenes will be possible again when Broadway theatres can safely host full houses. Every single member of our community is eager to get back to work sharing stories that inspire our audience through the transformative power of a shared live experience. The safety of our cast, crew, orchestra and audience is our highest priority and we look forward to returning to our stages only when it's safe to do so. One thing is for sure, when we return we will be stronger and more needed than ever."
The league will continue to hear from scientists and doctors about how best to restart the industry while looking at things like screening and testing, cleaning and sanitizng, wayfinding in theaters and backstage protocols.
"Our membership is working closely with the theatrical unions and in concert with key experts and some of the greatest minds inside and outside of the industry to explore protocols for all aspects of reopening. We are focused on identifying and implementing necessary measures that will enable us to resume performances safely for Broadway audiences and employees," said Charlotte St. Martin, President of the Broadway League. "We are determined to bring back the people who rely on this industry for their livelihood, and to welcome back all those who love this vital part of New York City, as soon as it is safe to do so. As so many of us in the Broadway community have been saying during this time - We'll be back, and we have so many more stories to tell."
Productions are expected to resume over a series of rolling dates in early 2021, but a specific date has not been set.
Broadway shows were suspended on March 12.
At the time, 31 shows were running, including eight that were in previews. Eight more were in rehearsals preparing to open in the spring.
Among the shows that won't be reopening are Disney's "Frozen."