Plans to honour winners of this year’s Olivier Awards are being considered as it is confirmed that the ceremony will be cancelled following the closure of the Royal Albert Hall.
Due to be held on 5 April, the ongoing developments regarding the COVID-19 pandemic and its effects on the industry led to the iconic Royal Albert Hall to shut its doors until at least the 1 May.
Confirming the cancellation of this year’s Olivier Awards, the Society of London Theatre, said, “It is with deep regret that we have to announce the cancellation of the Olivier Awards 2020.
“Following the government’s new advice on social distancing yesterday and the subsequent closing of many theatres and public venues, we no longer feel that it is feasible to host the ceremony that we had planned to deliver.
“We are working through plans on how to properly honour and announce this year’s winners, and will release further information soon.”
All tickets purchased will be refunded, with the Royal Albert Hall intending to get in touch with all ticket holders.
Regarding the closure of the venue, its management issued the following statement.
“In light of the COVID-19 pandemic and following advice from government, it is with a heavy heart that we have had to close the Royal Albert Hall to the public, until at least 30 April.
“Beyond that date, we will continue to follow government advice.
“The safety and security of our artists, audiences and staff is, ultimately, all that matters.
“We’ve been here for the nation for almost 150 years in good times and bad. We exist to be open, to entertain, to inspire. Our doors are made to be open to the world and so it goes against everything in our nature to close them. But these aren’t normal times and we find ourselves in the unique situation where closing our doors is the best way to look after the world.
“The consequences of these national actions are going to be hugely damaging. The Royal Albert Hall does not receive regular government support and is dependent on income related to events, which will not be happening. The lost income from closing the venue will pose serious challenges for the Hall and its stakeholders. We invest millions of pounds every year just to look after our building, but our main costs are our staff, whose livelihoods are at stake. We have committed to pay our people through various closure scenarios, and any support you are able to give us would be enormously appreciated.”