BY SOPHIE LEWIS, CBS News
The Tony Awards have joined a growing list of cultural events postponed due to the coronavirus. The news comes as Broadway suffers its longest blackout in history.
The 74th annual Tony Awards were scheduled to air live on CBS on Sunday, June 7, from Radio City Music Hall in New York City. The show will be rescheduled, but a new date will not be determined until Broadway reopens, the awards show said in a press release Wednesday.
Broadway theaters have been shut down since March 12. While they hoped to reopen on April 13, that date seems less and less likely given the current state of the COVID-19 pandemic in New York City.
“The health and safety of the Broadway community, artists and fans is of the utmost importance to us,” the press release said. “We are looking forward to celebrating Broadway and our industry when it is safe to do so.”
New York state now has more than 30,000 confirmed coronavirus cases, over 17,800 of which are in New York City, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced at a press briefing Wednesday. About 12% of those diagnosed have been hospitalized.
“We’re still on the way up the mountain,” Cuomo said. “We have not turned the trajectory nor have we hit the apex.”
A handful of Broadway stars, including “Moulin Rouge!” star Aaron Tveit, “Come From Away” cast member Chad Kimball, and “Legally Blonde” Tony nominee Laura Bell Bundy, have tested positive for the virus. On Tuesday, Terrence McNally, one of America’s great playwrights and a multiple Tony Award winner, died at the age of 81 from complications from the virus.
A number of shows that had planned to open this spring have also been put on hold, including “Caroline, or Change,” “Company,” “Six,” “Birthday Candles,” “Mrs. Doubtfire,” and “Take Me Out,” among others. Some shows have been canceled entirely, including the revival of “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” and “Hangmen.”