NEW YORK CITY – All kinds of New York performers could get their long-awaited curtain from the coronavirus pandemic.
Governor Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio separately announced plans to resume live performances in the city on Monday.
The initiatives aim to get the city’s dormant arts sector going again through a combination of socially distant and COVID-19 tested events. Cuomo said they will set the stage to eventually reopen Broadway.
“I don’t have a set schedule for you, but this is the path we are going to walk while simultaneously monitoring the infection rate and the hospital stay rate,” he said.
Cuomos Plan – NY PopsUp – is a nationwide 100-day festival of 300 “pop-up” events. Events start on February 20th at the Javits Center and last until Labor Day.
Confirmed cast members include Hugh Jackman, Amy Schumer, Alec Baldwin, Chris Rock, Matthew Broderick, Sarah Jessica Parker, Patti Smith, Mandy Patinkin and Billy Porter, according to a publication.
According to Cuomo, there will be a combination of in-person and online events to pull the needle between live performances without mass gatherings.
“They are not designed to be planned in advance and attract a crowd because we don’t want a crowd,” he said.
Events will “crescendo” with the 20th anniversary of the Tribeca Film Festival and the opening of Little Island at Pier 55, Cuomo said.
De Blasio’s plan, announced shortly after Cuomos, ruffles the city’s open restaurant and street program.
“Open Culture” offers new one-day permits for arts and cultural institutions and entertainment options. Once approved, these venues can host socially distant performances in more than 100 street locations across the five boroughs.
De Blasio designed it as part of his “Recovery For All Of Us” campaign, unveiled in his last state in the city. The city’s cultural scene serves as a conscience and a source of hope, and without it, no recovery would be complete, he said.
“Open culture – bringing culture to the streets of New York City,” he said.
De Blasio also announced “Curtains Up NYC” on Monday – an attempt to help qualified venues raise the federal Save Our Stages money.
The federal program offers grants of up to $ 10 million to help with live performances, organizations, and performers during the coronavirus pandemic.
Curtains Up NYC offers free webinars three times a week about the program and its application process. In addition, applicants are connected to trained advisors for virtual one-on-one interviews.
The program officially starts on Wednesday.