Savannah Guthrie made Today history on Wednesday morning when she co-anchored the morning show from her basement at home, after coming down with a ‘mild sore throat’ and ‘the sniffles’ amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The 48-year-old mother-of-two revealed on Tuesday night that she would be joining her co-anchor Hoda Kotb via video link, while sharing images of the mini studio that had been set up in her New York City basement.
‘Hi everybody! Well, this will be a first. I’m going to be anchoring Today from my house!’ she wrote on Instagram – while insisting that she is simply acting out of ‘an abundance of caution’ and ‘to model the super vigilance the CDC has asked of us’.
WFH: Savannah Guthrie made history on Wednesday morning when she tuned in to co-anchor the Today show from home, after coming down with ‘the sniffles’ and a ‘mild sore throat’
Something different: The 48-year-old shared images of her at-home studio set-up on Tuesday evening, revealing to Today viewers that she would not be coming into the studio
Helping hand: Savannah revealed that her husband, Mike Feldman, had been roped in to serve as a producer and technician while she works from home
‘I’m staying home because I have a mild sore throat and runny nose,’ she continued. ‘This was the advice of NBC’s superb medical team and my bosses. I feel good and am sure I will be back in no time – but during these days, it’s on all of us to be extra cautious and caring of those around us.
‘So see you tomorrow on Today – from my basement!’
The news comes as it was revealed that a staffer on the Third Hour of Today had tested positive for COVID-19, which NBC revealing on Monday that it had asked hosts Al Roker and Craig Melvin to remain home and ‘trace their contacts’ to ensure they had not come into contact with the person.
As of Tuesday, both were also tuning into the show from home, with Al and Savannah both joining Hoda, 55, via video link on Wednesday morning – a first for the popular morning show.
‘And we are back on a busy Wednesday morning, one not like a normal one here on Today,’ Savannah said while opening the show. ‘This show has been around a long time, 60-something years, but never has this happened before.
New normal: Al Roker has been working from home since Tuesday morning, after a staffer on the Third Hour of Today was revealed to have tested positive for the coronavirus
Tuning in: The Today anchor noted that it is the first time in Today show history that such a set-up has been put in place
Absence makes the heart grow fonder! Hoda confessed that she was ‘feeling a little lonely’ in the studio by herself and admitted she was ‘missing her partner in crime’
‘We’ve got Hoda in our studio, Al and I are working from home, Craig is actually [working] from home as well, we’re going to talk to him a little bit later this morning.’
Savannah went on to joke about her very ‘short’ commute, noting that she had simply had to walk down some stairs in order to get to work on Wednesday.
‘I will say Hoda, this was the shortest commute in the history of the world,’ she told her co-anchor, who clarified that Savannah was in fact ‘in her basement’.
‘Yeah, I walked down the stairs!’ the mom-of-two responded.
Hoda then admitted that the set-up on viewers’ screens – which showed Savannah in one box, Hoda in another, and Al in a third – was ‘a little funky’, but said that she was ‘happy to be sitting in between you guys’.
She did however confess that she was ‘feeling a little lonely’ in the studio and missing her ‘partner in crime’.
Say hello! Savannah insisted to viewers that she was simply acting out of ‘an abundance of caution’ and that she ordinarily wouldn’t have thought anything of her symptoms
New view: Mike, with whom Savannah has two kids, was caught on camera helping his wife with her work
Solo: Hoda remains in Studio 1A, despite a staffer on the Third Hour of Today testing positive for COVID-19
‘Things look a little different, I feel a little lonely here, I’m missing my partner in crime, she’s usually six feet away here!’ Hoda joked.
For his part, Al, 65, seemed more than happy with his at-home set-up, telling his two co-stars that he had ‘just got the coffee maker going’.
‘It is very weird I will admit, but… venturing out, making sure you keep that physical distance, [even though] it’s eerie, everybody is practicing what [the experts] are preaching.’
Savannah joined Al in urging viewers to follow CDC guidelines for social distancing, noting that she is not showing any of the most serious symptoms connected with the coronavirus, but that she feels it is more important than ever to take extra precautions when feeling unwell.
‘I have a sore throat and I have the sniffles,’ she explained. ‘I didn’t even think anything of it, because frankly that doesn’t seem to be on the official list of symptoms.
‘But what I’ve been told is number one, doctors are getting new information about this novel coronavirus, it’s new, that means we’re learning about it and the symptoms that present.
Precaution: Savannah shared the news about her decision to work from home on social media on Tuesday evening
Taking care: She urged others to follow CDC guidelines and look after others
‘And the other thing is, if you’re sick at all, the CDC is saying this is the time to stay home, and so, I had to admit it, and you know me, I like to come rain or shine and spread my germs around, but we don’t do that anymore. We stay home, and we keep everybody safe.
‘And like I told you, I think of it as a way of loving your neighbor. Love your neighbor and keep them safe.’
One upside to Savannah’s new working arrangement is the opportunity to spend more time with her husband, Mike Feldman, who – she revealed on Instagram – has stepped in to serve as a producer and technician while she is working from home.
‘Big shoutout to my husband @feldmike who has turned into producer and technician!!’ she wrote on Instagram, while sharing an image of Mike sitting on a bed while working away on a laptop.
The Today show’s new normal comes as the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the US hit more than 6,300. 103 people are known to have died as a result of the illness.