The coronavirus has put TV’s music shows in limbo.
The latest news is that “American Idol” (shown here with Grace Leer) has sent its contestants home, at least for now. It had already taped episodes through March 29, but had planned to go live on March 30.
That joins other music-related changes, including:
– “Idol” had taped its “Hollywood Week” episodes, with duets (March 22) and solos (March 23), plus, apparently, a Hawaiian episode (March 29), in which judges decided who’s in the semi-finals. But the next phase was supposed to be live, starting March 30. For now, the contestants are back home.
– There’s no corresponding news on “The Voice,” still dominating Monday ratings.
– Two live award shows, both scheduled for Las Vegas, have been postponed. The Academy of Country Music show was going to be April 5 on CBS; it’s tentatively expected in September. The Billboard Music Awards were set for April 29 on NBC; there’s no word on a new date.
– The country show, however, has hatched an alternative. “ACM Presents: Our Country” (8-10 p.m. April 5, CBS) will have country stars offering acoustic songs and memories from their homes; it will also include clips of past ACM shows.
– New music has also become scarce latenight. Some shows have new monologs, but then cut to reruns; ABC has temporarily switched Jimmy Kimmel to reruns and moved him to 12:35 a.m.; his 11:35 p.m. spot goes to virus-oriented “Nightline” shows.
– But some music shows were taped well in advance. That includes “The Masked Singer” (8 p.m. Wednesdays on Fox) … a “CMT Crossroads” (10 p.m. March 25 on CMT), with a powerhouse pairing of Kelsea Ballerini and Halsey … And theGershwin Prize for Popular Song (9 p.m. March 29, PBS).
This year’s Gershwin show honors Garth Brooks. It was taped March 4, with Jay Leno hosting and music by Brooks, Keith Urban, Chris Stapleton, Trisha Yearwood, Ricky Skaggs, Keb’ Mo’, Lee Brice and the Howard University Chorus.
– And in news unrelated to TV music, “Onward” will be reaching homes early. The Pixar film received strong reviews, but the was hit by the temporary closing of movie theaters. It will be sold on Movies Anywhere, beginning at 8 p.m. ET today (March 20) and will reach Disney+ on April 3.