Joint Statement by Theatres and Arts Venues in Victoria

Melbourne-Fringe-2021-Town-ChoirThis joint statement by theatres and arts venues in Melbourne acknowledges the significant and specific impacts that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on the performing arts industry around the world, and specifically in Melbourne during extended periods of lockdown. This impact extends to our artists, audiences, employees, partners, donors, funders and other stakeholders.

We are committed to re-opening and operating to ensure the safety and wellbeing of all our stakeholders. We are committed to the development and implementation of COVID-Safe policies that meet or exceed the conditions set out in Chief Health Office Public Health Directions (PHDs) as released from time to time by the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services.

We believe as a collective of theatres and arts venues operating in Melbourne that consistency across venues provides certainty and security to our artists, audiences, employees, partners, donors, funders and other stakeholders. This will be beneficial for the sector as a whole as well as individual theatre companies, arts venues, and producers, both large and small.

With this in mind, we will require all visitors 16 years and over to our venues to be fully vaccinated while on-site until further notice. Please note that individuals with a medical exemption or who are not legally able to be vaccinated are excluded from this requirement.

In line with the directions laid out in the Victoria’s current roadmap of a 90% vaccination target, we strongly encourage visitors to wear a fitted face mask while in theatre auditoriums and indoor spaces when social distancing is not possible (except when you are eating and drinking or have a medical exemption that excludes you from wearing a fitted mask).

These settings will be reviewed regularly and adjustments will be made to our 2022 policies as required. We are looking forward to welcoming artists and audiences back to our venues and to being able to once again produce and present exceptional and memorable live theatre on our stages.

List of Names of Signatories:

Abbotsford Convent, Bunjil Place, Chapel Off Chapel, Dancehouse, Footscray Community Arts, fortyfivedownstairs, La Mama, Malthouse Theatre, The MC Showroom, Melbourne Fringe, Melbourne Theatre Company, The National Theatre Melbourne, The Substation, Temperance Hall, Theatre Works, Victorian Association of Performing Arts Centres, Wyndham Cultural Centre

Image: Town Choir – courtesy of Melbourne Fringe