SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – Some theaters and other performing arts centers are still empty despite state guidance going into effect on April 15th.
“We also have a responsibility to our community to make sure we are being safe and, you know, that we are not responsible to the further spread of disease,” Megan Wygant, the executive director of CLARA Studios, said.READ MORE: Who Is Mark Lavea, Suspect Killed In San Andreas Hostage Situation?
Some theaters said it’s great to know that they can welcome people back in their seats. But, with how few people they can welcome back in, reopening may not be worth it. So, some theaters are holding off on reopening their doors.
“It costs money to run the theater. If we open at 25 percent capacity, it’s not really enough to keep the economic engine going,” Buck Busfield, the producing artistic director of The Sofia, the home of the B Street Theater, said.
“We can’t rehire the staff back. We can’t advertise this venue for live performance until we are yellow or even out of the tier system entirely,” Wygant said.
Currently, counties in the red tier could allow theaters that seat 1,500 or fewer to have 10 percent capacity or 100 people.
It could also allow 25 percent capacity if all guests show a negative COVID-19 test or prove they are fully vaccinated.READ MORE: Trap, Tag, Haze: New Efforts To Get Bears To Behave In Tahoe Area
Those guests could decide if cast members will break a leg and perform in-person again for some places.
“It’s about the will of the public. They’ll let us know. We do surveys like all of the other artist groups and they’re warming up to the idea quickly,” Busfield said.
In the meantime, it’s a waiting game until some theaters can take center stage in people’s lives. Theaters are dreaming of the day they can experience their pandemic encore.
“I cannot imagine standing here on that first night and not just sobbing,” Wyant said.
B-Street said when they do reopen, it’s leaning towards not heavily advertising it. Busfield said it’s nice to celebrate a reopening, the theater wouldn’t want to be disrespectful to those who have suffered losses during the pandemic.MORE NEWS: Yuba City Neighborhood 'Traumatized' After High Speed Drivers Repeatedly Crash Into Homes
The director also told CBS13 it could cost the theater more to open at a lower capacity to bring on more staff for social distancing and cleaning purposes.