‘SNL’ to Air Tonight With Limited Cast, No Charli XCX or Studio Audience Amid Omicron Surge

“Saturday Night Live” announced the decision via Twitter as daily new COVID cases in New York reach an all-time high

snl saturday night live finale cold open
Photo credit: NBC

“Saturday Night Live” has announced via its Twitter page that it will not have a studio audience or a musical guest for tonight’s episode and that the show will air with a limited cast and crew. The show cited concerns over a new surge in COVID-19 infections in New York City fueled by the Omicron variant.

Paul Rudd is set to host tonight’s “SNL” episode with Charli XCX as the musical guest. Charli, however, will not be appearing.

“due to the limited crew at tonight’s taping of snl my musical performances will no longer be able to go ahead. I am devastated and heartbroken,” she said in a statement to fans.

Meanwhile, the New York Post reported that some members of the “SNL” cast have recently tested positive for COVID and that the show was considering canceling tonight’s episode, citing multiple insiders. Among the cast members that the insiders say will not appear tonight is lead writer Colin Jost, who hosts the mainstay segment “Weekend Update” with Michael Che.

“SNL” filmed three episodes remotely during the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 and began its 46th season last year with a limited, masked studio audience. The show has had a full audience since season 47 began in October.