The Broadway League and the 14 Broadway unions have reached an “emergency relief agreement,” which means that producers will pay cast and crew during the first few weeks of the shutdown and cover their health insurance for at least a month. (Details.)
Coincidentally or not, two Broadway shows that had been scheduled to open in the remainder of the 2019-2020 season announced the same day that they would not resume performances once Broadway reopened. “Hangmen,” by Martin McDonagh, starring Dan Stevens (Downton Abbey) and Mark Addy (Game of Thrones), had its first preview on February 28 and was originally scheduled to open on March 19th after a well-reviewed production that ran Off-Broadway in 2018 (my review.) The producers said: “We do not have the economic resources to be able to continue to pay the theater owners, cast and crew through this still undefined closure period.”
The fifth Broadway production of Edward Albee’s “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf,” starring Laurie Metcalf, Russell Tovey, Rupert Everett and Patsy Ferran, had its first preview on March 3rd and was scheduled to open April 9. Its producers said it would not open “due to ensuing cast scheduling conflicts amid the shutdown,” without elaborating.
Sixteen productions had been scheduled to open between March 12 and April 23 on Broadway — always the busiest time of the season — when Governor Andrew Cuomo ordered Broadway theaters closed on March 12th for at least a month in order to curb the spread of the coronavirus pandemic. All remaining NYC theaters were ordered shut three days later.