By Maureen Lee Lenker
August 21, 2020 at 11:50 AM EDT
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They say the show must go on, and the Tony Awards are taking that to heart.

The 2020 Tony Awards will happen at last this fall in a digital format. The exact date and further details including what the show's format might be are still to be determined. The news was announced via the Tony Awards official social media channels with the message, "It's the news you've been waiting for!  The 74th Annual #TonyAwards ceremony is going digital this fall. Stay tuned for more info."

“Though unprecedented events cut the Broadway season short, it was a year full of extraordinary work that deserves to be recognized,” Charlotte St. Martin, president of the Broadway League, and Heather Hitchens, president & CEO of the American Theatre Wing, said in a statement. “We are thrilled not only to have found a way to properly celebrate our artists’ incredible achievements this season, but also to be able to uplift the entire theatre community and show the world what makes our Broadway family so special at this difficult time. The show must go on, no matter what — and it will.”

Originally slated for June 7, the 2020 Tony Awards were postponed in the wake of the Broadway shutdown and other coronavirus related closures."The 74th Annual Tony Awards, scheduled to air live on the CBS Television Network on Sunday, June 7 from Radio City Music Hall in New York City, will be postponed and rescheduled at a later date, in coordination with our broadcast partner," an official statement said at the time. "The health and safety of the Broadway community, artists, and fans is of the utmost importance to us. We will announce new dates and additional information once Broadway opens again. We are looking forward to celebrating Broadway and our industry when it is safe to do so."

For a time, it seemed as if they might not happen at all, leaving some of the year's standout performances and productions to wonder if they'd ever get their moment in the Tony spotlight. Though the March 12 Broadway shutdown meant many of the season's shows were yet to open (the original cutoff date was April 23), shows like Jeremy O. Harris' Slave Play and performances like those by Danny Burstein in Moulin Rouge!Adrienne Warren in Tina: The Tina Turner Musical, and Tom Hiddleston and Charlie Cox in Betrayal were already high on awards' prognosticators' scorecards.

It's been a strange season for Broadway, forced to shut down just as the peak of the spring season was primed to launch. Now theaters sit dark and artists without work as the Broadway community waits for a day when it will be safe to re-open. The shutdown has been extended multiple times, from its original May end date to June to Labor Day to its current re-opening date of Jan. 2021.

While the future of Broadway and which shows might return remains murky, the Tony Awards will be here this fall to offer a moment of celebration amidst the uncertainty.

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The Tony Awards

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