NEW YORK (CBSNewYork)Broadway officially reopened Saturday, and the Boss was front and center with the return of “Springsteen on Broadway.”

As CBS2’s Kiran Dhillon reports, the energy in the Theatre District was electric and fans said they were thrilled to be back.

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“The show was fantastic. The energy was electric. He was incredible,” one fan said.

“First night back on Broadway, I couldn’t have asked for a better show to go to. Bruce was amazing, not to mention sitting the room with everyone, feeling good again, feeling the good vibes. Just a good night overall,” another fan said.

Bruce Springsteen’s autobiographical musical is the first show to open on Broadway since the pandemic forced theaters to go dark in March of 2020.

“I’ve missed live music. Bruce is the number one. I used to see a lot of concerts in general, and it’s been a long year, so to have my first show be Bruce and be an opening night at Broadway, it’s just pretty amazing,” one fan said.

“I’m more excited about it being the first show on Broadway than anything else. Just to support the community and to feel that New York’s back,” another fan said.

In the more-than-two-hour performance, Springsteen changed things up from the original production, including references to the pandemic, social justice and even his recent arrest at the Jersey Shore.

“Bruce is the greatest American poet, and he always has a finger on what the country’s feeling. He captured it perfectly. It’s lightning in a bottle every time,” one fan said.

In order to attend, Jujamcyn Theaters, which operates the St. James Theatre, mandated ticketholders show proof of vaccination and fill out a COVID questionnaire.

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Jujamcyn President Jordan Roth got emotional when asked about the significance of the evening.

“It’s an extraordinary thing to see people together again because this is what we have been hoping about and thinking about and planning for,” he said.

Along with the excitement, there was also tension. Protesters filled the streets for much of the night, with many saying the vaccination mandate infringes on their rights.

“If they do it and the next show does it and the next show does it and the schools do it, then where am I? I’m a second class citizen,” said Matthew Grace, with Citizens for Free America.

But many theatergoers say the safety measures are a small price to pay for the show to go on.

“It’s an honor to be here on the first opening night of the first show to open on Broadway. I mean, I feel blessed. I feel very lucky, and I’m also willing to get vaccinated to do it,” one fan said.

Despite some of the tension between fans and protesters, one thing everyone could agree upon is that New York City is getting back to normal.

“Springsteen on Broadway” runs until Sept. 4.

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CBS2’s Kiran Dhillon contributed to this report.

CBSNewYork Team