"The health and safety of the Broadway community, artists and fans is of the utmost importance to us," a representative for the Tony Awards told PEOPLE in a statement

By Dave Quinn
March 25, 2020 03:36 PM
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The show won’t go on for 74th annual Tony Awards this June.

On Wednesday, organizers behind the annual awards show — which celebrates the best of Broadway — announced that the upcoming show would be postponed in the wake of the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

Originally scheduled to air live on June 7 from Radio City Music Hall in New York City, the decision to reschedule the Tonys was made by the show presenters The American Theatre Wing and The Broadway League, in coordination with broadcast partner CBS.

“The health and safety of the Broadway community, artists and fans is of the utmost importance to us,” a representative for the show said in a statement obtained by PEOPLE. “We are looking forward to celebrating Broadway and our industry when it is safe to do so.”

“We will announce new dates and additional information once Broadway opens again,” the statement said.

Santino Fontana, posing with his trophy after winning best actor in a musical at the 2019 Tony Awards
| Credit: Jemal Countess/Getty

Broadway has been dark since March 12, with New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and Broadway League President Charlotte St. Martin bringing the curtain down on all performances in order to help stop the spread of the global pandemic.

The shutdown — the longest in Broadway history — was expected to be over April 12, with the Broadway League originally setting the week of April 13 as the date when performances would resume. No new date has been announced yet.

Since performance stopped on Broadway, several shows that would have been in the running for Tony nominations have announced that they have closed permanently — including plays The Inheritance, Hangmen, and the revival of Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf starring Laurie Metcalf and Rupert Everett.

Other shows — like the Broadway revival of Caroline, or Change, new plays Birthday Candles (with Debra Messing) and Intimate Apparel, and the new musical Flying Over Sunset — have been moved to the fall.

Several theater stars working in current shows have also revealed positive coronavirus diagnosis since the shutdown, including Moulin Rouge! star Aaron Tveit, Company star Matt Doyle, and Come from Away‘s Chad Kimball.

One of the most prolific playwrights, four-time Tony winner Terrence McNally, died from coronavirus-related complications on Tuesday at the age of 81.

Times Square, the home of Broadway, after the coronavirus outbreak
| Credit: Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty

New York is currently the epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak. As of Wednesday afternoon, at least 30,811 cases have been identified throughout the state — more than any other state, according to the New York Times. At least 59,502 people across all 50 states, Washington, D.C., and three U.S. territories, have tested positive for the virus.

At least 804 patients with the virus have died, 285 of them in New York alone.

On Tuesday, the White House urged anyone who had traveled to New York to self-quarantine for 14 days to stop the virus’ spread.

“You may have been exposed before you left New York,” said State Department doctor Deborah Birx at a White House news conference on Tuesday. “Everybody who was in New York should be self-quarantining for the next 14 days to ensure that the virus doesn’t spread to others.”

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from CDC, WHO, and local public health departments and visit our coronavirus hub.