Coronavirus causes chaos in the entertainment industry: BBC Radio 1’s Big Weekend is CANCELLED as Celine Dion leads the stars in postponing gigs and London’s West End is left empty
- The entertainment industry has been thrown into chaos as coronavirus (COVID-19) worsens across the UK
- Cultural events around the globe have been cancelled because of the virus, which has infected 139,356 and killed 5,117 at time of publication, amid warnings large public gathering could help the virus thrive and spread
- So far there has been 10 confirmed deaths and an estimated 5,000-10,000 people infected in the UK
- It has caused chaos in the entertainment industry with BBC Radio 1’s Big Weekend the latest festival to be cancelled over the pandemic
- Meanwhile London’s West End has been left empty over cancelled bookings, musicians have postponed gigs and even Glastonbury’s 50th anniversary festival in June hangs in the balance
- Coronavirus symptoms: what are they and should you see a doctor?
The entertainment industry has been thrown into chaos as coronavirus (COVID-19) worsens across the UK.
Cultural events around the globe have been cancelled because of the virus, which has infected 142,775 and killed 5,374 at time of publication, amid warnings large public gathering could help the virus thrive and spread.
So far there has been 10 confirmed deaths and an estimated 5,000-10,000 people infected in the UK.
Chaos: The entertainment industry has been thrown into chaos as coronavirus (COVID-19) worsens across the UK with Celine Dion, left, the latest music star to cancel gigs and BBC Radio 1’s Big Weekend, with Harry Styles, right, headlining being cancelled
As a result of this, it has caused chaos in the entertainment industry with BBC Radio 1’s Big Weekend the latest festival to be cancelled over the pandemic.
Meanwhile London’s West End has been left empty over cancelled bookings, musicians have postponed gigs and even Glastonbury’s 50th anniversary festival in June hangs in the balance.
MailOnline has investigated how the the entertainment industry has been affected by the coronavirus so far.
How the coronavirus is affecting gigs and concerts
Celine Dion is the latest music star to cancel gigs amid the global coronavirus outbreak.
The Canadian singer, 51, announced on her official Twitter account on Thursday: ‘Céline Dion #CourageWorldTour dates postponed in North America. Show dates from March 24 through April 27, 2020 to be rescheduled. – Team Céline.’
The news came just one day after the Canadian superstar, 51, postponed two concerts because she is suffering from a cold. She reassured her fans that she did not have COVID-19.
Celine leads a long list of stars cancelling gigs amid the pandemic, which currently includes The Who, Madonna, Mariah Carey, Stormzy, Green Day and Mabel.
Statement: Celine, 51, announced on her official Twitter account on Thursday: ‘Céline Dion #CourageWorldTour dates postponed in North America. Show dates from March 24 through April 27, 2020 to be rescheduled. – Team Céline.’
Mariah was due to appear in Hawaii next week but blamed ‘international travel restrictions’ for pushing the concert back to November – despite no confirmed cases in the US Pacific island state
Writing on Instagram, she said: ‘Aloha Hawaii!! I’m so so sad to have to announce that I’m postponing my show to November. Evolving international travel restrictions force us to consider everyone’s safety and well being.’
American R&B singer and songwriter Khalid, Korean pop group BTS, US rock band Green Day and Canadian-French singer Avril Lavigne have also cancelled dates in Asia.
British rapper Stormzy was due to play in Malaysia, Singapore, Japan, China and South Korea in the coming weeks but has delayed the shows until later in the year.
Aloha! Mariah Carey was due to appear in Hawaii next week but blamed ‘international travel restrictions’ for pushing the concert back to November – despite no confirmed cases in the US Pacific island state
Stars: Stormzy, (pictured, left, performing in Paris in February) and singer Mabel (pictured, right, in Berlin this month) have cancelled tours because of coronavirus
‘Lockdown’: Meanwhile pregnant singer Katy Perry is reportedly ‘in lockdown’ in her Sydney hotel as coronavirus anxiety grips Australia (pictured in Australia this week)
He told fans: ‘I was seriously looking forward to bringing the world tour to Asia and playing some epic sold out shows but due to the ongoing health and travel concerns surrounding the Coronavirus, I’m regrettably having to reschedule this leg of the Tour.’ He added: ‘I promise I’ll be back.’
Fellow BRIT Award winner Mabel has been forced to cancel the Italian leg of her tour of the coronavirus-hit nation.
Meanwhile pregnant singer Katy Perry is reportedly ‘in lockdown’ in her Sydney hotel as coronavirus anxiety grips Australia.
Katy, who is expecting her first child with fiancé Orlando Bloom, was apparently scheduled to do press interviews on Thursday, but cancelled as a safety precaution.
How the coronavirus is affecting festivals
BBC Radio 1’s Big Weekend
It was announced on Friday that BBC Radio 1’s Big Weekend, which was due to take place in Dundee over the late May bank holiday (22– 24 May), had been cancelled.
The annual event was set to see Harry Styles, Dua Lipa, Calvin Harris and Camila Cabello perform in the Scottish city.
Headliners: It was announced on Friday that BBC Radio 1’s Big Weekend, which was due to take place in Dundee over the late May bank holiday (22– 24 May), had been cancelled with Harry Styles, left, and Dua Lipa, right, headlining
A spokesperson said: ‘After careful consideration we have come to the decision that Radio 1’s Big Weekend 2020 in Dundee will not go ahead.
‘This decision has been made in conjunction with our event partners, in line with the advice from the Scottish government, and while we know fans looking forward to purchasing tickets will be disappointed, it is important that we prioritise the health and safety of all those involved.’
There are also growing concerns among music fans in Britain that the virus could stop the five-day Glastonbury 50th anniversary festival in late June, where 200,000 people are expected.
Adrian Coombs, Glastonbury Festival’s Head of Event Operations, said: ‘Glastonbury Festival thoroughly plans each year’s event, and puts in place all necessary measures to protect the public and maximise safety
‘We work closely with all of the relevant agencies, including Public Health England and the NHS, and always review our plans as any circumstances change.
Will it still go ahead? There are also growing concerns among music fans in Britain that the virus could stop the five-day Glastonbury 50th anniversary festival in late June, where 200,000 people are expected (pictured in 2019)
‘With this in mind and with our 2020 Festival still 16 weeks away, we continue to plan and prepare for the event, whilst at the same time closely monitoring developments with the coronavirus situation.’
203,000 people attended 2019’s event at Worthy Farm, though it has been suggested that it could grow even bigger in the future. Lana Del Rey will headline with Sir Paul McCartney, Taylor Swift and Diana Ross.
Edinburgh International Festival
The Edinburgh International Festival has announced that it is cancelling all its launch events, due to take place from 18 to 25 of March, in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
The festival, which was set to run in both Edinburgh and London, will instead broadcast a live digital event on its Facebook page on the 18 March at 12pm where viewers can ask questions to the programming team.
Festival Director Fergus Linehan said: ‘In light of the current Coronavirus outbreak, we will cancel all gatherings associated with our 2020 programme launch. Prioritising the wellbeing of our city, our audiences and artists, all launch events will shift online to an interactive format.
Cancelled: The Edinburgh International Festival has announced that it is cancelling all its launch events, due to take place from 18 to 25 of March, in response to the coronavirus pandemic
‘At this point, the Festival is almost five months away. For now we remain committed to running the International Festival as planned. In hope that the pandemic will be curbed by August, we must continue to provide security for our artists and for our sector.
‘We hope that in August, our Festival will provide a much-needed moment of joy after what will have been a challenging summer. To reassure our audiences, we have also revised our refunds policy to offer anyone with Coronavirus-related concerns a ticket refund.’
The 2020 programme will be announced next week with the actual festival taking place from 7-31 of August in Edinburgh.
Meanwhile Californian festival, Coachella, has been postponed from its original April date to October amid the coronavirus outbreak.
Postponed: Meanwhile Californian festival, Coachella, has been postponed from its original April date to October amid the coronavirus outbreak
‘While this decision comes at a time of universal uncertainty, we take the safety and health of our guests, staff and community very seriously,’ organisers said in a statement.
‘We urge everyone to follow the guidelines and protocols put forth by public health officials.’
The World Tour Bushfire Relief fundraiser at Lakeside Stadium on March 13 was cancelled earlier this week after Miley Cyrus pulled out of the charity event due to fears over the spread of coronavirus.
The U.S. singer, 27, was scheduled to headline the World Tour Bushfire Relief fundraiser at Lakeside Stadium on March 13.
She tweeted on Tuesday afternoon that she’d been advised not to fly to Australia amid the global health crisis.
She wrote: ‘Australia: Due to the recommendations of local, state, federal and international government authorities, including the Center for Disease Control, to reduce potential health risks in response to the current global health crisis, we are no longer traveling to Australia for the show.
‘I am so disappointed to not be there, but I have to do what is right to protect the health and safety of my band and crew.
Cancelled: The World Tour Bushfire Relief fundraiser at Lakeside Stadium on March 13 was cancelled earlier this week after Miley Cyrus, left, pulled out of the charity event due to fears over the spread of coronavirus. Robbie Williams, right, will still perform at World Tour’s Saturday night show
‘I will still be making a donation to help the victims of the Australian bushfires. I’m sorry to miss everyone in Australia, but I will be back soon.’
Concert promoters TEG Dainty told Daily Mail Australia: ‘We are very sad that Miley Cyrus has announced that she will not be travelling to Melbourne and that as a result the World Tour Bushfire Relief concert at Lakeside Stadium on March 13 can no longer go ahead.
‘All fans will receive a full refund and will be contacted by Ticketek shortly.
‘World Tour’s Saturday night show with Robbie Williams will still be going ahead, and we look forward to bringing Melbourne a fantastic night of entertainment. Robbie is already on his way to Australia.’
Miley was scheduled to perform alongside rapper Lil Nas X, British DJ Seb Fontaine and Australian pop duo The Veronicas.
How the coronavirus is affecting the West End and theatres
Despite New York Governor, Andrew Cuomo, closing Broadway with almost immediate effect and banning gatherings of 500 or more people, London’s West End has remained open.
An insider has revealed how ticket sales to popular theatre shows and musicals in the England capital have been affected by coronavirus, with cancellation rates among foreign tourists who are cancelling their travel plans to London on the rise.
A look at last minute theatre ticket retailer Today Tix shows a number of tickets available to see sell-out show Hamilton as soon as today, while a ticket at the end of the month costs as little as £62.50.
Meanwhile the cheapest tickets to see Wicked this month – a 2003 Broadway musical by Stephen Schwartz – are retailing for as little as £15.
The show MUST go on! Despite New York Governor, Andrew Cuomo, closing Broadway with almost immediate effect and banning gatherings of 500 or more people, London’s West End has remained open (Mary Poppins at the Prince Edward Theatre pictured)
Speaking to FEMAIL, a bookings operator revealed: ‘Today several cancellations for Hamilton mean four tickets are on sale for the show which is unusual.
‘We have definitely seen a change in sales since coronavirus hit. There has been an increase in tourists who were due to fly in from abroad cancelling their tickets for popular shows such as Mary Poppins.
‘Lots of venues are now asking for proof when customers are cancelling due to the travel ban.
‘As a result more new customers are asking cancellations and resell tickets’.
West End: A look at last minute theatre ticket retailer Today Tix shows a number of tickets available to see sell-out show Hamilton as soon as today, while a ticket at the end of the month costs as little as £62.50 (the Hamilton cast pictured in NYC in 2016)
Meanwhile, The Stage reports that The Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) has confirmed that all their performances on tour, London and Stratford-upon-Avon are still going ahead.
Although the company did add that they have experienced a ‘drop in bookings and customer cancellations’.
The publication also states that Shakespeare’s Globe is still going ahead with its special Playing Shakespeare with Deutsche Bank schools project for young people.
Although the theatre company insisted that they are ‘undertaking additional cleaning and disinfecting measures’.
How it is affecting staff
Meanwhile, a London West End worker, who wishes to remain anonymous, told MailOnline: ‘Arriving at work there was a strange atmosphere lingering: for many of us, it was a feeling of relief, we are here and we are thankful that we are still working in order to pay our rent and bills.
‘There was also an underlying sense of fear among us all. Fear not just from whether or not our jobs are safe and whether we will be paid if theatres are closed, but fear due to the lack of certainty in terms of our health.’
They added: ‘Over the past few days, we’ve had an increasing amount of staff call in sick, with flu-like symptoms, and terrible coughs and nothing has been told to us on what the theatre’s plans are and what it means for the well-being of the patrons that enter the theatre and for us.
‘Some staff have been waiting on coronavirus tests and in that time nothing has been done to step up measures to ensure all of the workforce and public’s safety. Also, the lack of staff means the pressure is heightened for those of us at work.’
Pictured: Oxford Street in London’s West End has had far fewer visitors than it typically would over the last few days (pictured earlier this month)
The insider continued: ‘Our health concerns are not being seriously addressed. I recently covered at a theatre in the west end for a sold-out show, of almost 1300 people, and was alarmed that they did not have sanitiser or soaps on the bars.
‘When I asked the other staff about it, they said they had already reported it weeks before to their supervisor team and nothing had been done.’
They concluded: ‘The majority of us are on zero-hour contracts but work full-time hours. If theatres close down, which they need to, where will our income come from? Questions asked to management teams with no answers.
‘We have had no information on anything over the past few weeks, we do not know what will happen if the theatres are closed for a given amount of time.’
How the coronavirus is affecting the TV and film industry
On Friday, The Jeremy Vine Show became the first UK TV show to cancel live studio audiences amid the coronavirus pandemic.
It comes after Orlando Bloom announced that production on series two of his hit Amazon Prime series Carnival Row in Prague has been halted amid the coronavirus outbreak.
Across America, major broadcasters have cancelled studio audiences, with some even halting production altogether, amid the pandemic.
The Jeremy Vine Show is the first UK TV show to cancel live studio audiences ‘for the time being’ with a spokesperson telling MailOnline that they have made the decision – which will take effect on Monday – ‘as a precautionary measure.’
EXCLUSIVE: On Friday, The Jeremy Vine Show became the first UK TV show to cancel live studio audiences amid the coronavirus pandemic
The response from other UK broadcasters to the outbreak has been much softer in comparison, with most continuing to welcome studio audiences, allowing ticket holders to ‘attend shows unless they have any symptoms or have been informed that they have had contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19.’
Many shows including Loose Women on ITV, BBC’s Question Time and The One Show, Countdown on Channel 4 and Channel 5’s The Jeremy Vine Show are filmed in front of live studio audiences across the UK.
As coronavirus sweeps the world, with 10 confirmed deaths and an estimated 5,000-10,000 people infected in the UK so far, MailOnline has investigated how the UK’s major broadcasters are currently responding.
The Jeremy Vine Show
The Jeremy Vine Show revealed to MailOnline that the decision has been made to cease hosting a live studio audience, usually made up of around 20 people.
A spokesperson for the Channel 5 programme said: ‘As a precautionary measure we have taken the decision not to have a live studio audience for The Jeremy Vine show for the time being.
‘This decision will take effect from Monday. We will continue to monitor and review official guidelines and advice.’
According to the BBC website, the public service broadcaster is following measures based on Public Health England advice, in regards to continuing to invite audience members to live filming.
They ask: ‘If you have been to a category 1 specified country/area, you should self-isolate and not attend the production or visit our buildings.
‘If you have been to a category 2 specified country/area you do not need to undertake any special instructions and can attend a BBC production or building, however if you feel unwell and are demonstrating signs and symptoms that are associated with Coronavirus, then you should self-isolate and call NHS 111 for further advice.’
The official message concludes that guests can still visit the BBC, unless they ‘have been informed’ that they have had contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19.’
Tonight’s the night! With Sport Relief set to air this evening, BBC Shows and Tours emailed ticket holders with the same information that can be found on their website
Specifically, the website stated: ‘Based on current advice you can visit the BBC, as a guest, audience member, and contributor unless you have been informed that you have had contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19. Contact NHS 111 if you have any queries.’
Deadline reported that the BBC are in fact looking into ways to vet studio audience members.
With Sport Relief set to air this evening, BBC Shows and Tours emailed ticket holders with the same information that can be found on their website, giving them an option to cancel their tickets if they are concerned they may have come into contact with coronavirus.
A BBC spokesperson told MailOnline: ‘We’ve been closely following the Government advice as we’ve been planning this event.
‘The Government isn’t suggesting that events like Sport Relief shouldn’t go ahead, but because people’s health and safety is our absolutely priority we’ve been following their advice and doing everything possible to keep people safe.’
Despite allowing guests to decide themselves whether or not to attend, it’s unclear if shows such as Sport Relief will have full audiences, with some taking to social media to express their intent to stay away in order to protect themselves and elderly loved ones and others insisting it should be cancelled.
ITV and Channel 4
Elsewhere, websites such as Applause Store and SRO Audiences are still actively taking bookings from the general public to attend the filming of major shows filmed for ITV and Channel 4.
At the time of publication, Lost In TV was offering the public free tickets to be in the studio audience for Dave TV panel show Mel Giedroyc: Unforgivable without any warnings, but posted a coronarivus guidance link above selecting tickets to attend new BBC show Take Off with Bradley and Holly.
At the time of publication, Applause Store was offering no advice at all on their website and was still allowing bookings to be taken for shows, including Ant And Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway and Celebrity Juice on ITV for dates in March.
Giving information: At the time of publication, Lost In TV was offering the public free tickets to be in the studio audience for new BBC show Take Off with Bradley and Holly amongst others
However, SRO Audiences – who offers tickets to the likes of ITV’s Loose Women, Channel 4’s The Last Leg – are following a similar approach to the BBC and offer a warning.
SRI Audiences have stipulated on their website that people with symptoms, or those who have been informed that they have had contact with someone who has tested positive, may not book tickets.
Their website reads: ‘Based on current advice, you may still book tickets and attend shows unless you have any symptoms or have been informed that you have had contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19.’
Broadcasters stressed to MailOnline that they are closely monitoring Public Health England and World Health Organisation advice.
MailOnline has contacted BBC, ITV, and Channel 4 for comment.
On Thursday Orlando Bloom announced that production on series two of his hit Amazon Prime series Carnival Row has been halted amid the coronavirus outbreak.
The actor posted a video on Instagram on Thursday from the Prague set of the show, surrounded by his castmates as he said: ‘It’s farewell from us as we go home to be quarantined.’
The British actor, who is expecting his first child with fianceé Katy Perry, added that production had shut down to allow cast and crew to head home to the US ahead of President Trump’s travel ban from Europe, which came into effect from midnight on Friday.
Shut down: On Thursday Orlando Bloom announced that production on series two of his hit Amazon Prime series Carnival Row has been halted amid the coronavirus outbreak
‘We’re coming home to the States, at least I’m coming home to the States because we want to get in before the quarantine,’ he explained as his co-stars toasted the news with shots in the background.
‘Big love everybody, stay safe out there. Self quarantine. It seems really crazy actually this whole corona thing but do the right thing by you and your family and stay safe.’
The actor, who looked in good spirits, ended the video by declaring: ‘A few weeks, we’ll beat this bad boy.’
Orlando stars in the Amazon series with Cara Delevingne, with filming taking place in Prague and Dubrovnik among other European locations.
Actor Tom Hanks and his wife Rita Wilson tested positive for the novel coronavirus, they revealed on Wednesday night.
The Forrest Gump actor and his wife, both 63, announced the positive test results on Instagram urging the public to ‘take care’.
The couple are currently in Gold Coast, Australia where the Oscar winner is filming an untitled Baz Luhrmann-directed Elvis Presley film produced by Warner Bros.
Hanks revealed he and his wife experienced symptoms including the common cold, body aches and chills before they decided to get tested.
Confirmed: It comes after actor Tom Hanks and his wife Rita Wilson tested positive for the novel coronavirus, they revealed on Wednesday night (pictured in February at the Oscars)
Everything you need to know about coronavirus
By Natalie Rahhal, Acting US Health Editor for DailyMail.com
HOW DANGEROUS IS CORONAVIRUS?
About 14 percent of people who contract the Covid-19 coronavirus are taken to hospital – with severe symptoms including breathing problems and pneumonia. About 5 per cent need intensive care.
But the majority who get the virus suffer nothing more than a cough and may never know they are infected.
So far, some 51,000 people around the world have already recovered from coronavirus – and that just includes the numbers who received a diagnosis.
HOW MANY PEOPLE DIE?
Officially, the death rate so far has been just over three percent. But experts believe the true mortality rate is probably between one and two percent. This is because most mild cases have not been picked up by doctors or reflected in the official numbers – so the death rate is inflated.
HOW DOES THIS COMPARE WITH OTHER DISEASES?
Seasonal flu kills roughly 0.1 percent of people. So Covid-19 is between 10 and 20 times more fatal.
But it is far less dangerous than SARS – the virus that ripped across China in 2003 – which killed 10 percent of patients.
BUT DOESN’T CORONAVIRUS SPREAD MORE EASILY?
Yes, but not dramatically. The best estimates suggest every person with Covid-19 passes it on to 2.6 people, on average. For flu that number is 1.5.
CAN IT BE SPREAD WITHOUT SYMPTOMS?
Initially scientists feared carriers who had no symptoms could pass it on. That is now in doubt.
What is likely, however, is those who have mild symptoms are putting it down to a cold and going about their normal lives – which puts others at risk.
HOW LONG IS IT BEFORE SYMPTOMS APPEAR?
Again, unclear. Initially scientists said this could take up to two weeks.
But recent evidence suggests the incubation period could be as long as a month – particularly among children.
The average, however, is much shorter. A Chinese study said the average period of symptom onset was 5.4 days for adults and 6.5 for children.
WHO IS AT RISK?
The virus can affect anyone – with a study of the first 41 infected people revealing two thirds did not suffer from any pre-existing condition. But the middle-aged are most likely to get it – 78 percent of those infected in China have been aged 30 to 69.
WHAT ABOUT THE OLD?
Only 3 percent of people infected so far have been over 80 – but if they get it they are more vulnerable. Analysis of 72,000 cases in China suggests for over-80s the death rate is 15 percent. For those in their 70s the death rate is 8 percent and for those in their 60s, 4 percent.
WHO ELSE IS VULNERABLE?
Those with other conditions – such as diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure and kidney problems – are likely to suffer severe complications if they become infected.
WHAT ABOUT CHILDREN?
Children seem to be low-risk. Less than 1 percent of the Chinese cases have been under the age of ten – and if children do get the virus it’s often a mild form.
They do, however, retain the virus for longer than adults.
A study last week found the virus was still present in the stools of some children for a month after they contracted it.
DOES GENDER MATTER?
Men are marginally more likely to get the virus than women. It is not clear why this is.
HOW DO DOCTORS TEST FOR COVID-19?
Anyone who has symptoms –particularly if they have travelled to an at-risk area – are told to call ahead to their health care provider, local emergency department or clinics.
This way, health care providers can be prepared, wearing masks, gloves and other personal protective equipment when they meet the possible patient and escort them to isolated areas of the facility.
They are tested using a cheek swab which is sent off for analysis at one of 12 Public Health England labs, a process that takes between 24 and 48 hours. Any positive test is double-checked at the main PHE lab in Colindale.
WHAT TREATMENT DO PATIENTS GET?
There is little doctors can do to tackle the virus, but they can treat the symptoms – such as fever and respiratory problems. Antivirals and antibiotics are also used, mainly to keep secondary problems at bay.
In the most serious cases patients are put on life-support equipment.
There are several clinical trials for potential coronavirus treatments ongoing worldwide, including one in Nebraska, where at least 13 patients are in quarantine, including two in biocontainment units.
WHAT ABOUT A VACCINE?
Even though the Wuhan virus appeared only a few weeks ago, 20 teams around the world are already manufacturing vaccines.
Chinese authorities provided the DNA code for the virus early on in the outbreak, enabling scientists to get to work straight away.
At least 30 companies and research institutions in the US are racing to make a vaccine.
Last week, one of these companies, Moderna, shipped its candidate vaccine to the US, signalling the shot was ready to begin clinical trials.
Even so, US health authorities say it will likely be upwards of a year before a vaccine is actually ready.
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