There have been rumors floating and people are wondering, “are Broadway shows canceled due to coronavirus?” Today (Thursday), March 12th, 2020, at 5:00 PM EST, New York is shutting down Broadway Shows. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo already declared a ban of gatherings of 500+ people in New York to help slow the spread of the coronavirus.

The decision to suspend Broadway shows happened after an usher of some shows tested positive for the coronavirus. According to Buzzfeed, the usher worked shows including Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? and Six before testing positive.

The coronavirus is thought to be contagious on people for up to 2 weeks before symptoms appear. One contagious usher working a Broadway show could contaminate thousands of people a night, quickly spreading the virus across New York and the world (as people travel from all over to witness Broadway shows).

While shows did not cease immediately, anyone who purchased tickets for shows during the suspension will be able to exchange their tickets for a later date when the theater is open again.

Before Cuomo decided New York is shutting down broadway shows, producer Scott Rudin actually lowered ticket prices to $50 to encourage people to come to the shows amidst the coronavirus concerns.

It’s true that New York without Broadway may help keep people away.

Despite efforts already in place, like suspending stage door greetings, suspending the whole gatherings will greatly reduce the outbreak and spread of viruses.

Are Broadway shows cancelled due to coronavirus? Yes. But, if you have to go out into large crowds or public places anyway, wash your hands to help keep yourself healthy and virus-free. Further, if you don’t have access to soap at water, use a quick spray of hand sanitizer to clean your hands.