Hugh Jackman has joined the masses in battling the coronavirus. Sitting on the bench in sports or other avenues of life such as theater isn’t necessarily a fun position to be in. With the COVID surge that has taken place over the last month and change, a lot of industries have really learned the value of having amazing backups.
In the NFL the 2021 season has seen the number of players that have tested positive double compared to its 2020 season. Broadway is looking at similar numbers. Hugh Jackman is just the latest Broadway star to go on the COVID list. However, he’s making sure to give some major overdue props to understudies that are keeping a lot of these plays alive!
Is Hugh Jackman Doing Ok?
Before we get to the impact that COVID has had on Broadway, it would be mean not to talk about Hugh Jackman’s current condition. The X-Men star shared that he had tested positive with the disease through his IG account. He also mentioned that he has been experiencing some mild symptoms. Jackman mentioned in his IG post,
“I just wanted you to hear it from me that I tested positive this morning for COVID” Jackman would go on to say, “My symptoms are like a cold, I have a scratchy throat and a bit of a runny nose”
Jackman recently posted that he’d received a booster shot. Although the 50+ year old actor remains in great shape he has had a very public battle with skin cancer. In short, he didn’t want to take any chances with COVID.
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Understudies The New Normal For Broadway Shows
Just last week Jackman’s co-star in the Broadway revival of the classic The Music Man, Sutton Foster revealed she had tested positive for COVID. At the time the theater company decided to continue performances of the show. Having understudies step in for actors who had gone on the COVID list. The performance apparently went so well that it prompted Jackman to give a spirited speech to the cast. Praising the work that understudies had done to make sure that show was able to go on. At the time Jackman mentioned,
“I’m emotional because it humbles me — their courage, their brilliance, their dedication, their talent,” An emotional Jackman continued saying. “The swings, the understudies, they are the bedrock of Broadway.”
With so many actors going on the COVID list audiences may very well need to get used to seeing more of these understudies on stage at their favorite shows.
The Show Must Go On … But Not Without The Lead Man
Hugh Jackman’s emotional speech may sound a bit hypocritical after the theater company officially decided to cancel all of “The Music Man” shows until January second. Potentially giving Hugh enough time to recover and get back on stage. Currently the show is still running their preview performances. That may have influenced the decision to pause all shows until the main man is back in the saddle. Still, it seems pretty clear that theater goers are going to have to get used to seeing other people potentially step in for their favorite actors.