Why? Just, why? Did the Tony’s invite him, and ask him to do this? It is worth a thought. Did he tell them he was planning to go off script, and the Tony’s greenlighted his ploy? I can understand the thought process. It puts an otherwise meaningless award show in the spotlight for a full news cycle. Why not?
Broadway has gotten away with this behavior before. I know the theater didn’t skip a beat when the cast of Hamilton shamefully called out Pence in the middle of the show. Hamilton was a unique beast, though. It was a generational show. The cast had so much power and prestige that they could afford the move. It was above the rest.
My theory with DeNiro is he did not help Broadway, and therefore, the theater. New York is the second most visited city in the US. It was once the first, but Vegas has gained that title. New York is the biggest supporter and advocate for the theater. Why would anyone on Broadway want someone to politicize the theater this way? I realize the theater has always been like Hollywood. It slants left, like most of the arts in this country, but why divide the way DeNiro did last night? Is it worth it? I don’t believe so. I don’t see where it is a wise business move to politicize it that fashion. Now, you give visitors to NYC an excuse to skip the Broadway shows. What’s the upside? Here’s a hint. None.
I like the shows. I like the theater. I appreciate the skills, talent, and production. I like the escape. I definitely don’t like tying the theater in with our current political situation. There just isn’t a reason to do that. I hope Broadway doesn’t skip a beat with this latest blunder, but I do feel it will. Don’t give potential paying patrons a reason to avoid a Broadway show when they visit NYC. DeNiro can afford to alienate. A lot of these productions, as well as the fantastic people participating in them cannot.