The COVID-19 pandemic is reshaping our entertainment and cultural events in a number of ways. We’ve seen festivals and exhibitions resurrecting the drive-in to ensure social distancing and now, an iconic venue in Berlin, Germany, is giving us a glimpse of what theaters may look like once they reopen.
The Berliner Ensemble theater group that performs at the 19th-century Theater am Schiffbauerdamm has removed 70 percent of its seating in the last 10 days in an effort to uphold Germany’s social distancing guidelines. Looking more like an art installation than a venue, the theater has cleared out every other row while additionally spacing chairs out at least six feet apart from one another.
Tickets are switching over to contactless to limit any possible spread of the virus. Attendees will be asked to wear a mask until they reach their seats, and there will be an usher ensuring proper distancing inside the auditorium. Guests will be allowed to come in a group of six at a time to avoid any crowding.
There is no word yet on whether or not ticket prices will go up, how long the admission process will take, and if there will be an open bar at intermission, but there’s no doubt that thespians are dying to get back on stage and we’re more than ready to be entertained again.