It has been 10 months since the lock downs began in hopes of quelling…or at least slowing down…the spread of the Covid-19 virus.  The entertainment sector has been the hardest hit with the closure of theatres, no live performances, and sporting events without fans.

As a part of his State of the State address, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo addressed the issue  that includes initiatives to get the economy started once again.

The New York Arts Revival will officially begin February 4 and is set to be a joint public and private initiative that will include performances and events.

According to Governo Cuomo; award winning performers Renee Fleming, Hugh Jackman, Amy Schumer, Chris Rock, Wynton Marsalis, the National Black Theatre, Ballet Hispanico, the Albany Symphony Orchestra, Pendragon Theatre in Saranac Lake, and Arts Nova are among those joining the initiative.

While details have yet to be laid out,, the performances will follow Covid and health protocols including outdoor venues and social distancing.

New York and The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation will be joining forces for the Creatives Rebuild initiative to put 1,000 artist back to work.

In his address Cuomo said, “safely Bringing Back the Arts with Pop-Up Performances and Events: New York is the cultural capital of the world. Our unique cultural assets — Broadway, museums, film, comedy, dance, and music — are fundamental to both the economy and the spirit of New York.  He noted that the cultural industry of New York brought in $120 billion and 500,000 to the state of New York and with the onset of the Covid pandemic tens of thousands of jobs have been lost; as well as, billions of dollars in revenue.

The recently passed Open Culture bill will also help to provide support artists presenting outdoor ticketed  events and is set to begin in March.

After being cancelled last year, the Tribeca Film Festival is scheduled to return in June.  Currently the timetable for Broadway to reopen is also this June.

Currently there are many cultural programs available via the internet and streaming; however, there are many low income households who cannot afford the high price of internet service.  Cuomo plans to introduce a first of its kind bill to offer affordable “Internet for All” with service as low as $15 per month.