Radio City Music Hall cancels the Rockettes' Christmas Spectacular for the first time in 87 years due to the coronavirus pandemic
* MSG Entertainment, which owns the Radio City Music Hall, announced Tuesday its decision to close the curtain on the
iconic festive show for 2020
* The Christmas Spectacular was to run from November 6 to January 3
* It is known for its performances by the legendary Rockettes dance troupe
* MSG Entertainment is also laying off one-third of its corporate workforce
* Sister company MSG Sports is also axing about 15 percent of its corporate staff
Radio City Music Hall has canceled the Rockettes' Christmas Spectacular for the first time in 87 years due to the coronavirus pandemic.
MSG Entertainment, which owns the Radio City Music Hall in New York City, announced Tuesday its decision to close the curtain on the 2020 festive show as infections of the deadly virus continue to surge across America.
The annual Spectacular, famous for its sparkling performances by the legendary Radio City Rockettes dance troupe, had been scheduled to run from November 6 to January 3 this year.
Its cancellation comes as the events giant also announced plans to lay off around one-third of its corporate workforce marking the latest business casualty to come from measures put in place to slow the spread of the virus.
'We are disappointed for everyone involved with the show, as well as for the many fans who make the Christmas Spectacular a cherished part of their holiday tradition,' MSG Entertainment said in a statement announcing the Spectacular's canceling.
All tickets will be automatically refunded at the point of purchase and fans can start snapping up tickets for the show's return the following season.
'We look forward to welcoming audiences back for the 2021 production, which is on sale now,' the company added.
This marks the first time the Christmas Spectacular has been canceled since its debut in 1933 catapulted the show into becoming one of the highlights of the Big Apple's festive calendar.
The 90-minute long celebration of the holiday season centers around the legendary Rockettes, set up by Russell Markert back in 1925.
Around 80 Rockettes take to the stage in a typical season and more than 75 million people have flocked to watch them since the show first opened.
The shuttering of the holiday performance comes as MSG Entertainment also announced Tuesday plans to lay off 350 people or about one-third of its corporate workforce.
MSG Sports, the sister company which owns the New York Knicks and the New York Rangers, is also planning to ax 50 jobs or about 15 percent of its corporate staff.
'This was a difficult decision for both companies, as we know that our success rests on the strength of our people, who consistently set the industry standard for excellence and professionalism,' the companies said in a statement.
'While we believe this is a necessary step to protect the long-term future of our businesses, we continue to actively pursue solutions that will allow us to safely reopen our doors, so we're able to bring as many employees back as quickly as we can, once a return date for live events is established.'
Live performance organizers have been hard hit during the pandemic, with theater shows, music performances and live sports first forced to shutter back in March.
In June, the Broadway League announced it was extending the closure of Broadway theaters for the rest of 2020.
Once the epicenter of the virus, New York City has recorded 222,522 cases of coronavirus and 18,927 confirmed deaths, with another 4,623 probable deaths.
Cases and deaths have been declining in the city and wider state but the outbreak is now spreading across the South and West of America, with Texas, Florida and California all hard-hit.
To date, more than 4.7 million Americans have tested positive for the virus and 155,000 have been killed. https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8592285/Radio-City-Music-Hall-cancels-Rockettes-Christmas-Spectacular-time-87-years.html