In New York, performance venues authorized to reopen in early April

Closed since March 2020 in the American cultural capital, they will be able to reopen with a still limited capacity, wearing a mask and compulsory distancing.

After the return of NBA matches at Madison Square Garden, then the reopening this Friday of some cinemas, New York may soon be able to celebrate the resumption of the performing arts: the governor announced on Wednesday that theaters could reopen on the 2nd April, with a still limited capacity.

The rooms of the American cultural capital, closed since March 12, 2020, will be able to reopen at 33% of capacity or 100 people at most, with the wearing of the mask and compulsory distancing, announced the governor Andrew Cuomo during a press briefing. Outdoor shows can accommodate up to 200 people. The thresholds will be raised for rooms capable of testing their spectators beforehand – to 150 people indoors or 500 outdoors.

With such thresholds, big Broadway productions – like Frozen, The Lion King, etc. – «will not be able to leave yet“, Martine Sainvil, spokesperson for Broadway, told AFP, without giving a new date. “But we are happy that some artistic venues, including some theaters, can reopen their doors and give audiences back a taste for what we have been missing so much from those dark months.She added.

Hospitalizations down

Some prestigious venues, such as the Apollo Theater in Harlem, or the huge hall of Park Avenue Armory on the Upper East Side, could also seize the opportunity. The announcement of this conditional green light comes as the number of cases and hospitalizations due to the coronavirus are down, in New York State as in other American states, against the backdrop of the acceleration of the campaign. vaccination and arrival of a third vaccine, that of Johnson & Johnson.

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While some states have started to lift a series of restrictions, such as Texas which announced on Tuesday the end of the wearing of the compulsory mask (which Joe Biden criticized, calling this measure a reflex “Neanderthal”), the governor of New York called to remain vigilant, in particular because of the uncertainties related to the new variants of the coronavirus. “In my opinion, some states go too far, too fast, did he declare. You release the restrictions too quickly, and you’re going to see the beast arise again.»


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