The casts of Waitress, Hadestown, Come from Away and more made the most of the N.Y.C. blackout, which started around 7 p.m. Saturday and lasted for hours

By Jen Juneau and Dave Quinn
July 16, 2019 10:23 AM
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Dave Quinn

The show must go on — even without power!

Multiple Broadway shows took their performances to the streets of New York City on Saturday evening after a blackout that started around 7 p.m. and lasted for hours.

As seen in videos posted to social media, popular musicals like Waitress, Come from Away, Hadestown and Rock of Ages saw their actors bring their shows outdoors to continue on for paying patrons.

One set of footage featured the cast of Waitress singing “Opening Up,” one of the show’s first numbers, on the sidewalk outside the Brooks Atkinson Theater to a crowd of people as cars passed in the background.

Hadestown‘s impressive performance — led by a trombonist and one of the show’s stars, André De Shields — saw Shields and other singers flawlessly execute an impromptu song with the repeating background lyrics, “Oooh, it’s a blackout!”

In videos posted to The Lion King‘s Instagram and Facebook accounts on Sunday, the cast revealed that many of their costumes had been damaged in a backstage flood as a result of the blackout, leading principal actors to perform the next day in dressed-down versions of their usual ensembles.

They were determined to still give theatergoers a great show after their Saturday night performance was canceled, though, writing, “But the show must go on — and it did, with a few minor adjustments of course.”

“Thank you to today’s audience for sharing this once in a lifetime Broadway performance with us, and thank you to our cast and crew for coming together in the way only theater people can,” the posts concluded.

N.Y.C. blackout
Atilgan Ozdil/Anadolu Agency/Getty

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Saturday’s power outage came on the 42nd anniversary of the 1977 blackout, in which the city was left without power for 25 hours.

Traffic was disrupted and several subway lines experienced delays, according to the Metropolitan Transportation Authority. Many commuters relied on buses and officials set up backup generators throughout the city.

Jennifer Lopez was forced to reschedule her concert at Madison Square Garden after already having kicked off her last of two shows at the venue as part of her It’s My Party tour when the lights went out, prompting an evacuation.

By Saturday night — after posting emotional videos explaining how “devastated and heartbroken” she was over the turn of events — Lopez, 49, revealed that she would be rescheduling the show for Monday.