2020 Met Gala postponed indefinitely due to coronavirus

By Heather Cichowski, with files from Zachary Harper

Another huge event has been called off due to the coronavirus. The 2020Met Gala has been postponed because of the pandemic.

On March 16, organizers announced this year's instalment of the annual fashion gala, which was due to take place May 4 at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, was being put on hold indefinitely.

The Met Gala is considered fashion's biggest night. Traditionally, it is held on the first Monday in May as a celebration of fashion, art and creativity. It sees celebrities don their most head-turning, awe-inspiring and sometimes outrageous outfits to celebrate the year's theme, which coincides with an exhibition.

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The news of the event's postponement comes after the Met Museum announced on March 12 it would close "until further notice" after two employees showed symptoms of COVID-19, according to Vogue.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has advised there should not be any gatherings of 50 people or more for the next eight weeks, so the museum elected to postpone the gala along with all other events and programs scheduled through May 15, according to an internal Met email.

Céline Dion at the 2019 Met Gala. Photo: © Getty Images

This year's gala theme was to be "About Time: Fashion and Duration." It was partly inspired by late British modernist novelist Virginia Woolf and the theories of French philosopher Henri Bergson.

It was also originally reported fashion's big night would be co-chaired by Emma Stone, Meryl Streep, Hamilton's Lin-Manuel Miranda, Louis Vuitton artistic director Nicolas Ghesquière and as per usual Vogue's Anna Wintour.

As the time of writing, there have been more than 168,000 cases of coronavirus in 148 countries. Health Canada data says 324 of those cases have been in Canada. The illness has caused more than 6,600 deaths worldwide.

Several events have been cancelled or postponed in recent days, including the 2020 Juno Awards which were originally scheduled for March 15 in Saskatoon. It's not known when or if it will be held at a later date.

Music festivals have also made changes to their schedules. The South by Southwest Music Festival in Austin was completely cancelled. Coachella, which was to take place April 10-12 and April 17-19, has been moved to Oct. 9-11 and Oct. 16-18.

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