New lockdown sees theatres closed until December

Theatres are to be closed until at least December under new lockdown rules revealed this weekend.

New restrictions to combat the ongoing pandemic were announced by Prime Minister Boris Johnson last night (Saturday, October 31).

Starting Thursday, November 4, the rules will see the closure of all non-essential retail stores, gyms, pubs, restaurants and entertainment venues while people will be encouraged to work from home where possible and to limit travel.

The government’s full list of entertainment venue closures includes “theatres, concert halls, cinemas, museums and galleries, casinos, adult gaming centres and arcades, bingo halls, bowling alleys, concert halls, zoos and other animal attractions [and] botanical gardens”

Schools and universities will remain open together with essential retail stores while takeaway and click and collect services will be permitted.

The new restrictions are to be in place until at least December 2 when its hoped restrictions can begin to be relaxed.

It was also announced that the furlough scheme has been extended until the start of December however further support for the self-employed was not spoken about.

In response to the announcement, a number of theatres have issued statements.

The Southwark Playhouse tweeted: “Hey, folks. We’ve listened to this evening’s government guidance and will issue a statement on Monday regarding forthcoming performances. If you have tickets for a show then you don’t need to call or email us – we’ll get in touch directly on Monday. Thanks for bearing with us!

“Tomorrow’s performance of A Night at the Musicals at 7pm will be going ahead as planned and so will The Last Five Years until Wednesday of next week.”

The Turbine Theatre said: “Thank you for your messages of support. In light of the Government’s announcement this evening we hope to issue a formal statement in the next few days about our plans. If you’ve already got tickets for any of our shows, please bear with us and we’ll be in touch with you as soon as we can to let you know further details.

“Our thoughts are with our colleagues who have worked so hard to reopen their doors this year in the most trying of circumstances. We will be back. Some day. Some way.”

six west end - 5
Six The Musical was due to open at the Lyric Theatre in November

The National Theatre said: “Following Government advice about new national Coronavirus measures, we must regrettably cancel performances of Death of England: Delroy from 5–28 Nov. Performances on Tues 3 & Wed 4 Nov will go ahead as scheduled.

“We thank you for your support and patience during this period of disruption. Our Box Office team will be in touch with ticket holders for cancelled performances as soon as possible.”

Picture: Stage Chat

About the author: Rachel Wise

UK based freelancer journalist Rachel contributes regularly to Stageberry with features and interviews from the hottest new shows and stage stars.


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