CHICAGO (CBS) — Things just got darker on Broadway, thanks to COVID-19.
New York announced Friday shows won’t resume until May of next year at the earliest.
But Broadway in Chicago is a little more hopeful. CBS 2’s Jeremy Ross has more on the state of the arts in the Chicago area.
Actors and those behind the scenes remain laid off or furloughed. Many of marquees have the words “keep calm and wash your hands.” But next year, that could change and that would be music to many ears.
The nimble notes played outside come from inside a one of a kind Stradivarius, a violin wielded by a world renowned musician Philippe Quint.
“This is probably some of the hardest and heartbreaking times for arts and artists around the world,” Quint said.
Like so many, COVID-19 has forced him to alter how he works. Years ago that would mean performing in a packed concert hall of 5,000 to 10,000 people. But he’s adapted to streaming concerts and moving his music outside.
“We’re playing on patios.” Quint said. “We’ve done some private concerts on the roof.”
Others in the arts have considered getting out.
“Some of my very successful, very accomplished colleagues have looked into completely different fields,” Quint said.
“I know actors who are contact tracers right now. One of the great fears for Chicago is a talent drain out of the theater.”
While Broadway in New York pushes back performances to May, CBS 2 theater critic Chris Jones said the major theaters hosting Broadway in Chicago might be able to open sooner. The first scheduled show to take place at the end of March.
“Some of the shows in Chicago are smaller and the producing organizations are more nimble,” Jones said. “I’m hopeful that in Chicago we’ll be able to get back earlier in the spring than what they’re talking about in New York. But I don’t think it’s, by any means, a certainly.”
“It’s not that I can go to a different county, because it’s the same situation everywhere,” Quint said.
But artists like Quint aren’t abandoning their craft. They’re trying to adapt faster then the virus causing all the pain.
CBS 2 reached out to Broadway in Chicago but did not hear back.