The pandemic closed Broadway until the end of the year (at least), and major regional theaters and major outdoor festivals in the United States have mostly turned to streaming. But many theaters are still finding ways to present live shows to the public.
Of course, there is a social distancing. Also, in some places, masks. Temperature controls. Contactless ticketing. Shows without intermission. Lots of disinfectant. And at the Footlights Theater in Falmouth, Maine, the actors will perform behind the plexiglass.
But these precautions mean there is a dinner theater in Florida, a street theater in Chicago, and a driving theater in Iowa.
“Our commitment is to do live theater – there is a huge difference between that and seeing something on a computer screen,” said Susan Claassen, artistic director of the Invisible Theater in Tucson, Arizona, a state that became Covid-19. hotspot.
There are also financial reasons for continuing: some theaters say they cannot survive a year without income.
“We would rather create a good theater than die slowly behind our desks,” said Bryan Fonseca, production manager for the Fonseca Theater Company in Indianapolis. The company plans to stage “Hype Man”, a three-character play by Idris Goodwin, outside, for 65 customers wearing a mask.
“I am hopeful and also very careful,” said Fonseca, “be careful not to create a problem. “
And in New York, Food for Thought Productions, a company that presents staged readings of one-act plays, plans to restart in a private club on July 13, with participants required to have undergone coronavirus testing.