The Lights Go Out in the Theater

By: Holly Shulman

Staff Writer

It’s always been said that “the show must go on,” but in Broadway’s case, that show has been postponed. Since the start of the pandemic, Broadway shows have been canceled through May 21, 2021 as of November 3 (Broadway News). This has been a shock and disappointment to many lovers of the stage and those whose jobs depend on it. This is the first shutdown due to a health crisis. The only other time Broadway had shut down was directly after the events of 9/11, only lasting two days before returning on the 13th (Broadway News). The past seven months have been a performer’s worst nightmare, to say the least.

Not only have the performers been affected by their sudden loss of paycheck, but also the surrounding restaurants that many would eat at pre and post shows. For example, a restaurant like Joe Allen thrives off of the tourism in Midtown and those Broadway show attendees. After the pandemic hit, the “reservations had dropped by like 90 percent” (Spectrum News). Similarly, Broadway brings in over $12 million to New York City’s economy. Without Broadway, New York City as a whole is not the same.

It is unknown when the actors and actresses will be back on the stage. However, many performers have done amazing things throughout the pandemic to brighten the spirits of those struggling during this time. For example, two Broadway actors, Harley Harrison Yanoff and Tess Primack started “Broadway From Home,” an online workshop and an opportunity for aspiring actors and singers to gain insight from Broadway performers (Broadway from Home). The first workshop features Taylor Louderman, the original Regina George from Mean Girls on Broadway! Individuals like Yanoff and Primack are bringing light into people’s homes during a time where they need it most. Hopefully, Broadway can get back on its feet soon. Ultimately, the power of music can bring much happiness and joy during a time of self-isolation. 

Stream Broadway musicals for free during coronavirus pandemic - Insider

This is Broadway during its bustling prime (Photo Courtesy of Insider). 

This is the front page of Broadway From Home’s website (Photo Courtesy of Brwyfromhome)

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