Nightly at Broadway’s Walter Kerr Theater, Hades, the king of an industrial underworld, boasts of his “power chords and power lines” earlier than bellowing, because the lights flash, “I conduct the Electric City!”
But on Saturday night time, even the title character of “Hadestown” turned out to be powerless.
The blackout that darkened elements of Manhattan’s West Side pressured the closure of all but a handful of Broadway reveals — in addition to film theaters, Carnegie Hall, a Jennifer Lopez live performance at Madison Square Garden, a lot of Lincoln Center and lots of smaller venues, stranding ticketholders and disappointing vacationers who had flocked to efficiency venues for a Saturday night time out.
“There was a line of people outside waiting, so we hate to have to not do the show for them,” Aaron Tveit, one of many stars of “Moulin Rouge! The Musical,” which is now in previews, stated disappointedly as he left the shuttered Hirschfeld Theater. “Hopefully everyone is just safe.”
The electrical energy failed about an hour earlier than curtain for many reveals, that means the casts and crew have been already in place and audiences have been on their manner.
[The energy failure trapped thousands of people in subways and dimmed Times Square.]
Some lucky patrons were treated to brief sidewalk songs while producers tried to figure out whether the lights might return in time to salvage Saturday night — generally the most lucrative night of the week for Broadway.
Outside “Hadestown,” the Tony winner André De Shields (who plays Hermes), accompanied by a horn player, serenaded the crowd with a blackout-themed riff on “Road to Hell,” the Tony-winning show’s opening number.
Even some Carnegie Hall performers entertained blackout crowds.
There are currently 30 shows running on Broadway, and the Broadway League said it believed that 26 canceled their performances Saturday night. Only those located on the east side of Broadway were able to perform, including “Be More Chill” (at the Lyceum), “Beautiful” (at the Stephen Sondheim), “Beetlejuice” (at the Winter Garden) and “Burn This” (at the Hudson).
[Hot dogs and champagne: How some New Yorkers found bliss in the blackout.]
Among those canceled were all of Broadway’s biggest grossers — “Hamilton,” “Wicked,” “To Kill a Mockingbird,” “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child,” and all three Disney shows — “The Lion King,” “Aladdin” and “Frozen.” Lincoln Center Theater canceled its two Off Broadway shows, “In the Green” and “The Rolling Stone,” and elsewhere on the campus a Mark Morris dance performance was canceled, as were a Jazz at Lincoln Center webcast and parts of Midsummer Night Swing.
At 8 p.m. at New World Stages — home to several commercial Off Broadway shows including “Jersey Boys” and “Rock of Ages” — the lobby was dark and crowds of ticketholders stood idly at the doors. Attendants, some looking as confused as showgoers, said that shows were canceled and tickets paid by credit card would be refunded. Outside, the cast of “Rock of Ages” sang for patrons.
Martine Sainvil, a spokeswoman for the Broadway League, said ticketholders should contact their point of purchase for information about refunds and exchanges.
Reporting was contributed by Niraj Chokshi, Nancy Coleman and Ali Watkins.