Deadline has confirmed that Rudin, under fire for allegations of employee mistreatment and toxic workplace behavior, is no longer involved in the “day to day operations” of the live, pop-up performance series of music, dance and theater.
According to NY PopsUp, Rudin made the decision several weeks ago to make way for an “artist-led” effort.
In a statement initially provided to The New York Times and confirmed by Deadline, NYPops Up said, “From its inception, the goal of NY PopsUp was to empower a group of brilliant artists to program and executive a multi-month, multi-disciplinary, statewide festival that would bring live performance back to New Yorkers and help catalyze the reopening of live venues from Broadway to Buffalo. Scott Rudin made the decision more than three weeks ago to step back from managing the day to day operations of the program, once it became clear that the original vision of an artist-led initiative had been fully realized.”
The NY PopsUp festival of live, free “pop up” performances – musician Laurie Anderson played this week for the crowd waiting to get the Covid vaccine at Manhattan’s Javits Center – was announced by Governor Andrew M. Cuomo in February as a way to gradually re-open the state to live, if small-scoped, events. Earlier this month, two Broadway theaters were utilized for performances, including solo performances by Nathan Lane and Savion Glover before reduced-capacity audiences.
When announced, the festival, with events planned through Labor Day, was described as a private/public partnership overseen by Rudin and producer and Tribeca Film Festival co-founder Jane Rosenthal, in coordination with the New York State Council on the Arts and Empire State Development.
The festival will conclude with the 20th anniversary of the Tribeca Film Festival and the new Festival at Little Island at Pier 55.