Tony Awards celebrations and Drama Desk Awards ceremony postponed
The Broadway League and the Drama Desk Awards have postponed events in light of the protests taking place across the U.S.
Several awards season telecasts have been postponed indefinitely in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter Movement. The Drama Desk Awards, the annual award show recognizing achievements on and off Broadway, was scheduled to take place on May 31 but was postponed to allow NY1 to continue its coverage of the protests. The Broadway League postponed its “Tony Award Celebration,” which was scheduled to take place on June 7.
The 65th annual Drama Desk Awards, originally scheduled for May 31, was cancelled the morning of the event. The ceremony was to be broadcasted on the Spectrum network NY1 and in an online stream in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, but the network continued its coverage of the Black Lives Matter Movement.
In a joint statement, Drama Desk co-presidents Charles Wright and David Barbour said: "As an organization committed to the principle that all voices must be heard, we stand with the global Black Lives Matter movement, decrying the racial injustice and violence in our nation and city. We are grateful to NY1 for its comprehensive news coverage at this painful moment."
A new date for the Drama Desk Awards will be announced at a later time.
In response to the 74th Annual Tony Awards being cancelled indefinitely due COVID-19, The Broadway League had originally scheduled a special “Tony Award Celebration” to be streamed on TonyAwards.com and BroadwayOnDemand.com on June 7. This steamed event will be postponed, according to a statement by Broadway on Demand CEO/President, Sean Cercone.
“We are collectively saddened and angered by the senseless murders of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Tony McDade, Breonna Taylor and disheartened by the ongoing racism and injustices that continue to permeate our society,” Cercone said in a statement. “We at Broadway On Demand do not tolerate hate, racism, injustice or bigotry of any kind. The continued violence against Black Americans is inexcusable. We stand in solidarity with Black Lives Matter. This is a pivotal moment in our nation’s history and our priorities at this time are to listen, to engage in meaningful dialogue and to do our best to enact real change in our industry and in our nation. We truly believe theater has the power to educate, inspire, develop empathy, bridge cultural divides, and ultimately unite under the banner of humanity. Broadway On Demand recognizes that we have the power to influence and change the world through art. Our goal as an organization is to create a platform where underrepresented voices can be amplified and uplifted. That is why it is of the utmost importance that the programs we deliver adhere to these beliefs and reflect the world in which we live.”
A new date for the event will be announced at a later time.
UPDATE: Broadway.com Tony Awards event, ”Show of Shows: Broadway.com Salutes the Tonys,” which was scheduled to air on Sunday, June 7 at 7PM ET has been postponed. The Obie Awards, which honor Off- and Off-Off-Broadway theatre, have also been postponed.