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Broadway's 'Diana' Coming To Netflix In Absence Of Live Theater

empty theater

The Broadway musical “Diana” will be heading to Netflix in lieu of live performances for now, due to the ongoing pandemic, the Associated Press reported.

The move is an unconventional one, where the cast of the show will reunite in an empty theater, perform the show for the cameras and then it will be released digitally.

“We speak for the entire company when we say that we couldn’t be more excited to finally be able to share our show with theater lovers everywhere. Though there is no substitute for the live theater, we are honored to be a part of the quality entertainment that Netflix provides its subscribers worldwide,” the show’s producers said in statement Wednesday (Aug. 12), AP reported.

There will be the expected safety protocols in place, with initial and repeated testing during the production, an isolation plan and modifications to the theater to ensure ventilation. The changes were worked out with the Actors' Equity Association, the labor union which represents actors and stage managers.

Broadway, like every other public facet of American life, was put on pause by the pandemic. The shutdown has resulted in a decline in revenues for businesses like hotels and restaurants that benefit from Broadway, and the closure also forced Disney to completely end its “Frozen” live show.

But the pandemic has shown how flexible media can be, with Disney releasing the theatrical version of its “Hamilton” show early, on July 3. That shows that releasing media across different channels could offset some of the pandemic's fiscal chaos. Consumers are increasingly move to digital, subscription experiences--especially streaming sites, which 70 percent of consumers use, according to a recent PYMNTS' survey.

The data suggests that this could be a feasible plan — rather than peeling off fans through cheaper digital options, fans surveyed by ticketing app TodayTix said they were more likely to buy a ticket for “Hamilton” after seeing it on Disney+.

Actors' Equity Association Executive Director Mary McColl said the hard part would be putting the new safety ideas in practice.

“The work to provide the safest workplace possible in this environment will require everyone to work together, from the employer to every employee,” she said, according to AP.

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