Dr. Fauci has ignited hope for the live entertainment industry in the United States, predicting that we could be opening theaters and live music venues in Fall of 2021.
The New York Times reports that Dr. Fauci and the Association of Performing Arts Professionals joined entertainment industry personnel this past Saturday January 9th to discuss the future of industries relying on mass gatherings. Depending on how the COVID-19 vaccination rollout and mask compliance goes under Biden’s Administration, Fauci offered a very vague timeline of when theaters and venues may reopen to the public, while also suggesting that audiences would need to still wear masks for some time after.
“If everything goes right, this is will occur sometime in the fall of 2021,” Dr. Fauci said, “so that by the time we get to the early to mid-fall, you can have people feeling safe performing onstage as well as people in the audience.”
According to The New York Times, Fauci went on to say that “if the vaccine distribution succeeded, theaters with good ventilation and proper air filters might not need to place many restrictions for performances by the fall — except asking their audience members to wear masks, which he suggested could continue to be a norm for some time.”
“I think you can then start getting back to almost full capacity of seating. We’ll be back in the theaters — performers will be performing, audiences will be enjoying it. It will happen,” Fauci added.
Fauci also suggested that venues could independently adopt rules such as some U.S. airlines have, requiring their attendees to provide negative test results before being admitted.
Let’s hope Dr. Fauci is right, or better yet, that his prediction is just cautious optimism.