American Theatre: Lifting the Curtain on the Gypsy Robe

As Actors Equity prepares to announce a new name for its beloved Broadway ceremony, here’s a look at why they made the change.

It is fair to say that until last spring, very few people who are not directly connected to Broadway Theatre knew about the “Gypsy Robe”— that is, until Actors’ Equity Association announced in April that it would be renaming the decades-old ritual (the new name, “Legacy Robe,” was announced today).

We are not, of course, performers who have ever received the Robe, which goes to the longest-serving chorus member of the cast of each Broadway show. We write instead as scholars, taking a deeper look at what this word means to the Romani community, and why this name change is so important. READ MORE