#Stageworthy News of the Week.
The Broadway community made its political preference clear last week – with performances by Billy Porter and Jennifer Hudson; heck, the producers of the Tony Award broadcast produced the Democratic convention — and there is some evidence that theater lovers will not even be watching the Republican National Convention this week, which reportedly plans a “brutally simple” strategy: “change the focus from firing Trump to fearing Biden and Harris,” according to Mike Murphy, strategic adviser to Republican Voters Against Trump, writing in the Washington Post.
“The goal,” the New York Times’ David Leonhart writes, “will be to persuade voters to stop focusing on the virus, the economic downturn and Trump’s performance as president. His campaign will instead try to make the alternative seem worse than the incumbent.”
To help counteract this attack,
Broadway for Biden is stepping up its activity, with a Town Hall this past weekend where three Broadway veterans discussed Biden-Harris plans to address unemployment in the theatrical community and a
phone bank tonight: “Team up with company members of Lion King or Newsies to see which team can make the most phone calls into crucial swing states.”
Tony Awards in The Fall
The Broadway League and the American Theatre Wing announced that the 74th annual Tony Awards, originally scheduled at Radio City Music Hall last June, will take place…online….sometime this Fall. Maybe October? The announcement has sparked more questions than answers.
From the Times: “Twenty plays and musicals opened on Broadway during the abbreviated 2019-20 season, but only the 18 shows that opened before Feb. 19 will be eligible for Tony Awards. A revival of “West Side Story” that opened Feb. 20 and the new musical “Girl From the North Country,” which opened March 5, will not be eligible because too few nominators and voters saw them before Broadway shut down March 12.” They will presumably be included in the 75th annual Tony Awards. Without West Side Story, there are no candidates for the musical revival category.
Without “Girl from the North Country,” the potential nominees for the best musical category would include “Jagged Little Pill,” “Moulin Rouge!” “The Lightning Thief” and “Tina.”
At Theaters, Push for Racial Equity Leads to Resignations and Restructuring
including, in New York, William Carden, artistic director of Ensemble Studio Theater
The movie adaptation of the 2018 Broadway production of Boys in the Band will launch on Netflix September 30th.
For the time being, theater companies are pretty much confined to being online. The question is: Do virtual productions have a future once COVID-19 is a thing of the past? Or will artists be only too happy to refocus their energies on the stage? That is, if indeed the theater companies to which they’ve devoted their professional lives can secure the financial resources to come back from the pandemic once that health crisis is over.
When are you ready to attend live, in-person theater in NYC?
— New York Theater (@NewYorkTheater) August 22, 2020
And I chose my answer because I have already attended live theater in Virginia in a very well done safe way.
— Diane “mask fashionista” Wilshere (@petricat666) August 22, 2020
I can’t answer for the possibilities missing. Such as how will theaters/performance spaces be set up? How is their ventilation, what safety measures for performers & staff have been put in place? and what is the set up of audience?
— Jess Applebaum (@JessApplebaum) August 23, 2020
Outdoor Dining Is a Hit, but Restaurants Face ‘Apocalyptic’ Times
Nearly 10,000 restaurants have set up outdoor seating in New York City. They are struggling to stay alive until indoor dining returns.