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New York Governor Andrew Cuomo hopes rapid COVID-19 testing may be the short-term solution to reigniting public gatherings, but Broadway will still be in the dark.
Seven thousand rapid tests were used for a recent Buffalo Bills football game. Cuomo hopes the same model can be used for other venues. A plan announced earlier this week and reported by Broadway News includes outdoor concerts and pop-up events. A “New York Arts Revival” partnership has drawn big-name participants like Hugh Jackman and Amy Schumer, along with producers Scott Rudin and Jane Rosenthal.
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“One thing is clear: we must act. We cannot wait until summer to turn the lights back on the arts and provide a living wage to artists,” Cuomo said. “New York City is not New York without Broadway.”
It’s unclear which Broadway shows will weather the COVID-19 storm. As previously reported, Mean Girls will not return to Broadway, though the national tour intends to hit the road once again.
New York theater companies like Manhattan Theatre Club and the Public Theater continue to roll out virtual content.
On the regional front, theaters continue to navigate a moving target to reopen with live performances, but innovative solutions also continue to emerge. Signature Theatre in Arlington, Virginia, (which produced a stellar revival of A Chorus Line last year) has planned an entirely virtual season called Signature Features. The five-show season includes fully produced shows filmed in HD, beginning with a new Stephen Sondheim retrospective, Simply Sondheim, featuring Norm Lewis, Solea Pfeiffer, Emily Skinner, Conrad Ricamora and more.