West End Extends Coronavirus Shutdown Until June 28 – Variety


London’s West End will stay closed for not less than the subsequent two months.

The Society of London Theatre (SOLT) on Tuesday confirmed that theater closures have been prolonged from Could 31 to June 28. The group, which represents venues throughout London’s theater district, underlined that “this doesn’t imply theaters will reopen on June 29.”

“If additional cancellations are mandatory, they’ll proceed to be introduced on a rolling foundation. Completely different theaters and productions are more likely to reopen at totally different instances,” mentioned SOLT, which additionally suggested ticketholders to await correspondence from venues as a way to prepare refunds, credit score notes or exchanges.

The extension comes weeks after a deal was struck between SOLT and U.Okay. actors union Fairness, guaranteeing that West End performers who’re presently underneath contract will be capable of proceed on these pre-existing phrases, and may restart rehearsals or performances with revised dates, as soon as the shutdown ends.

Talks are ongoing between trade teams and the federal government, which is predicted to ease lockdown measures and announce a tentative schedule for trade reopenings within the coming week. Nevertheless, it can take time for the theater world to get again on its toes. In contrast to movie and TV, which may slowly start once more in smaller operations, theater thrives with reside audiences, which is able to take time to nurture post-COVID-19.

The prolonged closure comes simply days after main theater producer Cameron Waterproof coat mentioned main musicals might not be capable of be staged till “early subsequent yr.”

Interviewed by the BBC, Waterproof coat — whose Delfont Waterproof coat theater chain staged “Pricey Evan Hansen,” “The Ebook of Mormon” and “Phantom of the Opera” within the West End — mentioned it appeared as if the West End and Broadway “are going to be the final to return” in comparison with many different international locations.

“All main producers are all speaking to one another on either side of the Atlantic. The reality is, till social distancing doesn’t exist anymore, we will’t even plan to reopen,” mentioned Waterproof coat. “From the second social distancing has gone, it can take us 4 to 5 months to really get the actors again collectively, to redo the mothballed theaters — it’s a large, large factor. Every huge musical has about 200 folks engaged on it, in that one constructing.”


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