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Hugh Jackman Announces He Has Covid-19

todayDecember 28, 2021 10

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Hugh Jackman, who is starring as Professor Harold Hill in “The Music Man” at the Winter Garden Theater on Broadway, announced on Tuesday that he had tested positive for the coronavirus.

“I just wanted you to hear from me that I tested positive this morning for Covid,” Jackman said in an Instagram video. “My symptoms are like a cold: I have a scratchy throat and a bit of a runny nose, but I’m fine. And I’m just going to do everything I can to get better, A.S.A.P., and as soon as I’m cleared, I’ll be back onstage.”

Shortly after Mr. Jackman posted his video, “The Music Man” announced on Instagram that all performances would be canceled through Saturday. Tickets can be refunded or exchanged where they were purchased. Performances will resume on Sunday, and Mr. Jackman will return to the show on Jan. 6.

Several other Tony winners star in “The Music Man” alongside Mr. Jackman: Sutton Foster as Marian Paroo, Shuler Hensley as Marcellus Washburn, Jefferson Mays as Mayor Shinn, Jayne Houdyshell as Mrs. Shinn and Marie Mullen as Mrs. Paroo.

Preview performances for “The Music Man” began on Dec. 20, with opening night scheduled for Feb. 10.

The producers of “Ain’t Too Proud,” a jukebox musical about the Temptations, also announced on Tuesday that their show will close on Jan. 16. The show has not run since Dec. 15, citing coronavirus cases. It is planning to resume on Tuesday, Dec. 28, and hoping to run for three more weeks before closing for good.

Last week, the musicals “Jagged Little Pill” and “Waitress,” as well as the play “Thoughts of a Colored Man” announced that they had closed without so much as a farewell performance — all were already on hiatus because of coronavirus cases among cast or crew.

The efforts of “The Music Man” to stay open had just been highlighted on Thursday night, when the actress Kathy Voytko, a swing and an understudy for Marian Paroo in the musical, filled in for Ms. Foster, who had Covid, at the last minute. After the show, the actress and dancer Katherine Winter posted an Instagram video of Mr. Jackman praising understudies and swings as “the bedrock of Broadway.”

“Kathy, when she turned up at work at 12 o’clock, could have played any of eight roles,” Jackman said at the curtain call. “It happened to be the leading lady. She found out at 12 noon today, and at 1 o’clock she had her very first rehearsal as Marian Paroo.”

As the coronavirus and its Omicron variant spread, understudies and swings are becoming more important than ever: Shows are relying on them to step in for sick or unavailable leads.

“This is unprecedented,” Mr. Jackman continued. “It’s not only happening here at the Winter Garden, but all over Broadway. This is a time we’ve never known.”

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