For the first time since March 2020, a live audience returned to 30 Rock for “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon,” Fox News has learned.
Seats have been empty since the coronavirus pandemic shut down New York City and forced the show to be filmed from home for a number of months.
New Yorker Andy Cohen was the in-person guest and Fallon, who was dressed up in a suit, revealed 58 people were in the audience.
“I’ve never been so excited to do a show for 58 people in my entire life,” Fallon joked. “After last year, this is like performing at a sold-out Madison Square Garden.”
Fallon also revealed that all the audience members were fully vaccinated first responders and the audience for the rest of the week will continue to be first responders and health care workers.
“Tonight Show” band, The Roots, was in the studio as well but off the side and spread out.
Fallon described on social media the feeling of having people back inside. “I can’t describe the feeling of performing in front of a live audience. We work well together. I missed it so much. Thank you,” he said on Instagram.
Guests to the “SNL” studio reportedly have to take a mandatory COVID-19 test upon arrival. The test is self-administered and can yield results in time for the show.
As an extra precaution, there are reportedly temperature checks and face masks must be worn by audience members at all times.