Rockettes cancel all 2021 Christmas Spectacular shows as New York reports record COVID cases

This comes as some Broadway shows have nixed performances because of COVID-19 outbreaks among cast members.
NEW YORK -- As some Broadway shows nix performances because of COVID-19 outbreaks among cast members, the Radio City Rockettes canceled all remaining Christmas Spectacular shows in the 2021 season.

"We had hoped we could make it through the season and are honored to have hosted hundreds of thousands of fans at more than 100 shows over the last seven weeks. We have loved bringing back this cherished tradition that helps usher in the holiday season in New York City and look forward to welcoming fans back to Radio City Music Hall in 2022," showrunners said in a statement posted to Twitter Friday.



Tickets will be refunded at the original point of purchase.

"We were really just disappointed because we came all the way from Alabama -- that is a long way," one tourist told our sister station WABC.

Earlier Friday, the Rockettes called off four performances scheduled that day because of breakthrough COVID-19 cases in the production, and plans for upcoming shows were still being assessed. The popular holiday program generally has four shows per day in December at Radio City Music Hall in Manhattan.

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New York state reported Friday that just over 21,000 people had tested positive for COVID-19 the previous day, the highest single-day total for new cases since testing became widely available.

One-day snapshots of virus statistics can be an unreliable way to measure trends, but the new record punctuated a steady increase that started in the western part of the state in late October, and has taken off in New York City in the past week as the omicron variant spreads.
Multiple Broadway shows, including "Hamilton," "Mrs. Doubtfire" and "Harry Potter and the Cursed Child," called off performances in recent days because of virus cases in their all-vaccinated casts and crews. "Hamilton" remains canceled until further notice while others have resumed performances.

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"Moulin Rouge! The Musical on Broadway" also announced that Friday's show was canceled due to the detection of positive COVID-19 test results in the company. The show is expected to resume on Saturday.

"At the end of the day, we'll follow the science, and the science will say, 'You need to shut down this performance,'" Broadway League President Charlotte St. Martin told The Associated Press on Thursday. "We anticipated that because they were telling us all along that if more people didn't get their shots, that new variants would arrive and new variants would have cases. And guess what? It's called omicron."

On Thursday, Madison Square Garden Entertainment venues, including Radio City Music Hall, announced they would start checking for proof of vaccination for children ages 5-11. That includes performances of "Christmas Spectacular Starring the Radio City Rockettes."
Children will need to have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine in order to gain entry into the MSG venues.

The group's other venues include Madison Square Garden, Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden, Radio City Music Hall and Beacon Theatre.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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