The introduction of the third stage of the province’s reopening strategy on Friday saw diners, gym members, movie-goers, and others allowed indoors again, provided it’s only 50 people at a time and physical distancing measures are followed.
While that allowed some businesses to get back to somewhat normal, the city’s concert venues remain dark, and could be for awhile, since only 50 ticket-buyers (performers and crew are not included in that figure) are allowed in a venue.
When it comes to a place like the Grand Theatre, which can seat 775 people in the Regina Rosen Auditorium, that means only 6.5% of its capacity is available to use. Those economics make it hard to reopen just yet.
“We were all ready to go with our 2020-21 season, and all that’s been put on hold for now,” explained Colin Wiginton, the city’s culture director, noting that some performers have postponed their tours as well. “(There are) lots of issues that we’re tracking, such as artists’ ability to travel as well as the health and safety precautions. So a lot of rentals that were coming in in the fall have all rescheduled into the new year.