Streaming Tony Award Celebration Postponed Amidst National Unrest

A streaming Broadway-themed fundraising special scheduled to air on Sunday, June 7 – the night that originally had been set for the annual Tony Awards – has been postponed in the wake of national unrest over the police killing of George Floyd. “We stand in solidarity with Black Lives Matter,” said an exec producer of the special.

In announcing the postponement today, Broadway on Demand CEO/President Sean Cercone said, “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.”

The special, which was to have streamed on the recently launched Broadway On Demand platform, will be rescheduled at a future date.

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“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,” said Cercone 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.”

Read the entire statement below.

With the Broadway coronavirus shutdown in place, the annual Tony Awards ceremony has been postponed, with no announcement yet on when or if the trophies will be handed out at all this year. CBS, the network home of the Tonys, has scheduled a Grease Sing-a-Long as a replacement, a move that disappointed some Broadway insiders who hoped for some sort of Tony-related programming.

Broadway On Demand then stepped in by planning a one-hour celebration of theater and the Tony Awards, with the support of, and as a fundraiser for, the American Theatre Wing and The Broadway League, presenters of the annual Tonys.

The special is the latest Broadway-related postponement since the protests began: Yesterday, New York’s Drama Desk Awards postponed its streaming event to a date TBD. That same day, New York’s Public Theater postponed its virtual We Are One Public gala.

Here is Cercone’s statement in full:

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. 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.

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