Each year by now the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame has not only held its Induction Ceremony but HBO has packaged and broadcast the event as well. Of course, like so many plans in 2020, that all got waylaid by the pandemic. We had previously announced that the event was pushed until November with HBO still covering the honor ceremony. As of an official notice, we have found out that a special is still happening but that the format will be greatly altered due to the same ugly circumstances.
July 8, 2020 – The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Foundation announced today that due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, it will replace its annual live induction ceremony with an exclusive special honoring this year’s Inductees. The program will be available on HBO and to stream on HBO Max SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 7 at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT and will replace the live 35th Annual Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony that was originally scheduled for May 2nd of this year.
The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame 2020 Inductee Class includes Depeche Mode, The Doobie Brothers, Whitney Houston, Nine Inch Nails, The Notorious B.I.G., T-Rex, and Ahmet Ertegun Award honorees Jon Landau and Irving Azoff.
“To protect the health and safety of our Inductees, their families, crews and our attendees, we’ve made the decision that the scheduled live event is not possible,” said John Sykes, Chairman of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Foundation. “Together with HBO and executive producer Joel Gallen, we will still create an exciting program honoring our 2020 inductees, by telling the stories of their incredible contributions to music and impact on a generation of artists that followed them.”
The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland is now open and debuts its 2020 Inductee exhibit on August 14.
The 2021 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will move to the fall with the 36th Induction Ceremony returning to Cleveland.
So, exactly how that special will be formatted is not clear at this time. Will HBO present a documentary-style special showcasing the careers and sounds of the inductees? Will presenters still toast the inductees via Zoom and/or social distancing, minus an audience? Will the only music be stock concert footage and/or music videos or could there be newly recorded performances and tribute artists included? We just won’t know until November. Regardless of the format – Rock & Roll, we still salute you!