The Westport Country Playhouse has become the latest regional theater to announce the postponement of its 2020 season due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Last month, the theater announced it was planning a truncated 2020 season beginning in July because of the health crisis. The postponed season was slated to feature the musicals “Ain’t Misbehavin’” and “Next to Normal,” the dramatic productions “Antigone” and Pearl Cleage’s “Blues for an Alabama Sky,” and Michael Gotch’s new comedy “Tiny House.”
The theater also planned to host five play readings in its Script in Hand series and presentations under its Family Festivities banner.
However, the theater will go online with an April 17 livestream presentation of “Getting to Know You: A Celebration of Young Artists” featuring Tony Award-winning performer Kelli O’Hara.
“This is a frightening and unnerving time for us all, especially for the Playhouse,” said the theater’s management on its website. “We have been forced to furlough half of our staff, and plan to bring them back when it comes time produce the 2021 season. It is our goal for their health insurance to continue without interruption. In addition, we have applied for government loans through the CARES Act, or the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act. However, with no continuing revenue from ticket sales, we cannot survive unless we raise $1.6MM between now and December 31, 2020. For those who are able, please make a donation to our Survival Fund.”
The Westport Playhouse’s action marks the second time this week that a regional theatrical company postponed its 2020 season for a year. On Monday, Ridgefield’s Thrown Stone announced its plan to delay its 2020 production until 2021.