Boris has decided his roadmap: step 3, beginning 17 May, will allow for the re-opening of outdoor venues. Indoor theatres will be able to re-open but will be limited to capacities of 1000 people or 50% whichever is lower.
Step 4, beginning 21 June, is the next potential step for theatres with the easing of all remaining capacity restrictions. It is highly likely though that enhanced testing and Covid-19 status certifications may be implemented.
There is something that has never stopped during this pandemic: flights.
SAGE adviser, Professor Dingwall, from Nottingham Trent University, has made some interesting comments while addressing a Royal Society of Medicine webinar on the virus entitled 'Covid-19 series: Pandemic sociology and why it matters'.
He compared airplanes to air conditioning systems in theatres, which have sophisticated systems to circulate air and control temperatures for their audiences. These make it unlikely to contaminate nearby surfaces or blow into the breathing zones of others sitting nearby.
When Andrew Lloyd Webber unveiled the safety measures at London Palladium, last summer, he said that socially distanced theatre is “a misery for performers” as well as feeling flat and in any case financially unviable. He also assured the audience that the theatre’s air-filtering system meant “we are safer in here than you would be in Oxford Street”.
Turned out, he was not wrong. Theatres are a safe place.