Broadway theatres extended a coronavirus lockdown until the end of May 2021 but will livestream the shows to benefit The Actors Fund.

People walk past a closed Broadway theater near Time Square, New York, NY, US, October 12, 2020.
People walk past a closed Broadway theater near Time Square, New York, NY, US, October 12, 2020. (AFP)

Broadway theatres may be dark, but there will be plenty of new online productions of some of classic plays this fall with some starry self-isolating actors, including Matthew Broderick, Morgan Freeman, Patti LuPone, Laura Linney and David Alan Grier.

Producer Jeffrey Richards on Wednesday unveiled a weekly play run of live-streamed works to benefit The Actors Fund. They will stream on Broadway’s Best Shows and ticket buyers can access the events through TodayTix starting at $5. The series will last seven weeks.

Online shows

The push begins October 14 with Gore Vidal's “The Best Man” starring Matthew Broderick, Morgan Freeman, John Malkovich, Zachary Quinto, Phylicia Rashad, Vanessa Williams, Reed Birney, Stacy Keach and Elizabeth Ashley.

On October 20, a production of Kenneth Lonergan’s “This Is Our Youth" will star Lucas Hedges, Paul Mescal and Grace Van Patten. David Mamet’s ”Race" is up on October 29, starring David Alan Grier and Ed O’Neill.

Mamet’s “Boston Marriage” is slated for November 12 with Patti LuPone and Rebecca Pidgeon. A revival of Anton Chekhov’s “Uncle Vanya” adapted by Neil LaBute follows on November 19 with Alan Cumming, Samira Wiley, Constance Wu and Ellen Burstyn.

On December 3, the original Broadway cast of Donald Margulies’ “Time Stands Still” reunites Eric Bogosian, Brian d’Arcy James, Laura Linney and Alicia Silverstone. The last effort is Robert O’Hara’s “Barbecue” on December 10 with Carrie Coon, Colman Domingo, S. Epatha Merkerson, Laurie Metcalf, David Morse and Kristine Nielsen.

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Virus-hit Broadway

Covid-19 shattered records for new cases in the US, straining hospitals, and darkening New York's Broadway theatres until June, a decision the Actors' Equity Association union called "difficult but responsible."

The Broadway closure that began in March was due to end in early January until the Broadway League industry group announced the extension on Friday.

Broadway theatres went dark in mid-March, as the pandemic hit New York. Previous target dates for reopening have come and gone without any progress in finding a way to put on indoor shows with live audiences that also protects actors and backstage crews working in cramped conditions.

READ MORE: Broadway extends shutdown until May 2021

Source: TRTWorld and agencies