Prior to the curtain rising on the first preview of Caroline, or Change at Studio 54 October 8, U.S. Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY) dropped by to say hello. Check out the pre-show speech above.
“We all know how important the arts are to New York,” said Schumer. “Over 200 people are employed just in this production, with 10s of thousands of good-paying jobs...and all of the other benefits economically.” Talking about the SBA grant for shuttered venues, (which the senator helped pass as a co-sponsor), Schumer added, “Not only did this help Broadway theatres like Roundabout, but all the little arts venues where so many artists get started.”
In addition, it was revealed that Schumer helped Olivier winner Sharon D. Clarke make her way over to the States to perform the title role. By contacting the charge d’affaires at the U.S. Embassy in London, a bureaucratic logjam was circumnavigated and her National Interest Exception waiver and visa approval was facilitated in time for rehearsals.
Following the performance, Samantha Williams, who plays Emmie, also gave a quick curtain call speech congratulating the performers who were making their Broadway debuts, including Clarke.