Broadway and Off-Broadway theaters will remain dark through June, and the New York Philharmonic has cancelled its entire season, also through June. It is the first time in the 178-year history of the beloved “Phil” that an entire season has been cancelled.
It is a tragedy on many levels –
NYC live theater and concerts , including Broadway, Off-Broadway, Off-Off Broadway, music stages such as Carnegie Hall, the Metropolitan Opera, Lincoln Center and smaller stages which showcase the next generation of performers and playwrights together support some 100,000 jobs both directly and indirectly.
Those jobs are include performers, musicians and stagehands, the people who create and repair the costumes, design and build the stage sets, etc.
Plus, it affects restaurants, hotels and small businesses in and around the Theater District, along with businesses which print the Playbills, provide the ballet slippers, dryclean the costumes, manufacture the NYC logo items sold in souvenir shops, and more.
It adds up to around $15 Billion dollars a year in revenue for New York City.
That’s money to run subways and schools, fund police and fire departments, fix potholes in the streets and mow the lawns in the parks, and everything else required to operate a city of 10 million people which welcomes 100 million visitors in a normal year.
See our Events Calendar
Some shows have shuttered permanently, others hope to re-open in late Summer or Fall 2021, or have already re-scheduled for 2022.
Here is our updated list of shut downs and postponements via Playbill and Broadway News:
Noah Haidle’s play, starring Debra Messing and presented by Roundabout Theatre Company, was scheduled to begin previews April 2.
It was postponed first to Fall 2020, now rescheduled to open in the fall of 2021 at the American Airlines Theatre.
Exact opening date for the Vivienne Benesch-helmed production has not been announced.
Caroline, or Change
The Broadway revival of Jeanine Tesori and Tony Kushner’s musical, starring Olivier winner Sharon D. Clarke, was originally set to begin previews at Studio 54 on March 13.
The Roundabout Theatre Company production now is scheduled to open in spring 2021 at a date to be announced soon.
Flying Over Sunset
The Lincoln Center Theater premiere was postponed on the date of its first preview. It had been scheduled to open in Spring 2021 and is now scheduled to open Fall 2021.
Flying Over Sunset, featuring a book by director James Lapine, music by Tom Kitt and lyrics by Michael Korie, was scheduled to begin previews March 12 in the Vivian Beaumont Theater ahead of an April 16 opening.
The musical, choreographed by Michelle Dorrance, is set to star Carmen Cusack as Clare Boothe Luce, Harry Hadden-Paton as Aldous Huxley, and Tony Yazbeck as Cary Grant—all three of whom experiment with psychedelic drugs int the ’50s to unlock their psyches.
The new musical is by director James Lapine, composer Tom Kitt, and lyricist Michael Korie. It had been scheduled to open in Spring 2021 and is now scheduled to open Fall 2021.
The new opera adaptation of Lynn Nottage’s play of the same name, had begun previews in the Mitzi E. Newhouse Theater at Lincoln Center February 27, ahead of a slated March 23 opening.
Two-time Pulitzer winner Nottage adapted her script to a libretto, collaborating with composer Ricky Ian Gordon and director Bartlett Sher. The cast is set to star Kearstin Piper Brown as seamstress Esther.
Also now re-scheduled to open in Fall 2021.
How I Learned to Drive
This revival was scheduled to open March 27, 2020 at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre, reuniting original director Mark Brokaw and stars Mary-Louise Parker and David Morse.
Paula Vogel’s Pulitzer-winning drama has been postponed by the Manhattan Theatre Club, but no new date has been announced.
The Michael Jackson bio-musical produced by Lia Vollack and the artist’s estate have re-scheduled the opening to 2022, at the Neil Simon Theatre.
The production had been scheduled to start previews July 6 and open August 13, 2020, then postponed to March 2021, and now postponed again.
The Music Man
The Scott Rudin revival , starring Hugh Jackman and Sutton Foster, has pushed back its opening to 2022.
Previews had been slated to begin September 9 ahead of an October 15, 2020 opening.
The show now intends to begin previews at the Winter Garden Theatre December 20, 2021, and open officially February 10, 2022.
In addition to Jackman as Harold Hill and Foster as Marian Paroo, the announced cast includes Jayne Houdyshell as Mrs. Shinn, Jefferson Mays as Mayor Shinn, Shuler Hensley as Marcellus Washburn, and Marie Mullen as Mrs. Paroo.
Jerry Zaks will direct, with choreography by Warren Carlyle.
The revival of the popular Neil Simon comedy, starring real-life married couple Sarah Jessica Parker and Matthew Broderick, was scheduled to begin March 13 at the Hudson Theatre, and an an April 13, 2020 opening.
The production was re-scheduled to run March 19 through July 18, 2021 at the Hudson Theatre, but no new date has been announced.
Take Me Out
The play about baseball stars Jesse Williams, Jesse Tyler Ferguson is expected to open in Fall 2021, at the Helen Hayes Theater.
The revival of Richard Greenberg’s play, produced by Second Stage, was originally intended to come to Broadway in the spring of 2020, but did not begin previews because of to the Broadway shutdown.
It re-scheduled previews on March 22, 2021 with opening night on April 22, 2021, which has been pushed back again.
In addition to Williams and Ferguson, the cast includes Patrick J. Adams, Julian Cihi, Hiram Delgado, Brandon J. Dirden, Carl Lundstedt, Ken Marks, Michael Oberholtzer, Eduardo Ramos and Tyler Lansing Weaks.
Subscribe to the NYC on the Cheap daily email newsletter
Radio City Music Hall has cancelled its popular annual Christmas Spectacular with the world-famous Rockettes.
The New York City Ballet has cancelled its popular annual performances of The Nutcracker.
The musical version of the popular film was scheduled to play its final performance on June 6 at the Winter Garden, so it has effectively closed early during the temporary Broadway closure.
- Beetlejuice photo courtesy Playbill
Disney Theatrical Productions announced in May that its stage adaptation of “Frozen” would not reopen on Broadway once the pandemic eased. The musical was the first Broadway show to be closed down by the health crisis.
According to the New York Times, “Frozen” had been the weakest of the three Disney musicals that had been running on Broadway — the others were “The Lion King” and “Aladdin” — and the company made it clear that it does not believe audiences will return in substantial enough numbers to sustain all of those shows.
However, touring productions of Frozen and The Lion King reportedly are still planned.
The Martin McDonagh play was suspended during previews and later closed. Performances began February 28, 2020 at the Golden Theatre ahead of what was to be a March 19, 2020 opening.
Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?
The Edward Albee revival, directed by Joe Mantello and starring Laurie Metcalf and Rupert Everett, was to open on April 9, 2020.
It was in previews for just a few days when theaters shut down and producers announced shortly afterward it would not resume.
Other Broadway and Off-Broadway Shows
There is no official word yet on the return of such popular shows as
- The Book of Mormon
- To Kill a Mockingbird
- The Lion King
We’ll keep you posted.
NYCOTC Editor Evelyn Kanter also is the author of several NYC and Hudson Valley guidebooks, including my latest, 100 Things to Do in NYC Before You Die.
Purchase autographed copies by emailing email@example.com
Thanks for following NYC on the Cheap.