Culture 15/10/2021

€10 tickets to celebrate 100% capacity in theatres and auditoria

The exception will be concerts and festivals with standing audience and in closed spaces, which will continue at 70% and will require a covid pass

3 min
Some of the OMAC musicians during the opening concert of the 24th Mediterranean Fair of Manresa.

RipolletAfter nineteen months of restrictions, this Friday the cultural sector recovers 100% capacity. Theatres, cinemas, auditoria, archives, libraries, museums, community centres, bookshops, galleries and other cultural facilities will be able to offer 100% capacity, both outdoors and indoors, but always with a mask. A measure that fully affects the festivals taking place this week, such as the Fira Mediterrània, the Sitges Festival and Temporada Alta, which can now offer 100% capacity.

Several venues have celebrated the measure by putting tickets on sale. The Auditori de Barcelona, the Gran Teatre del Liceu, the Mercat de les Flors, the Palau de la Música Catalana, the Teatre Lliure and the Teatre Nacional de Catalunya have today put on sale 30% of tickets that until now were not on sale at special rates of €10 – except for the Liceu, which costs €30. "It's a waste, in one hour we have sold 1,300 tickets," says the general director of the Liceu, Valentí Oviedo. Even so, the opera house will only put 85% of the tickets for Britten's War requiem on sale, because it considers that this will already meet demand. Oviedo believes that the return to the opera will be gradual and will not reach 100% until Christmas. "Perhaps there is some fear in the short term, but not in the medium term. Human beings have great resilience", the director of the Liceu stresses. The nineteen months of restrictions have meant "wear and tear" for the opera house, but the effects in budgetary matters have not been dramatic: "We have not closed, unlike other great European opera houses. We have worked with uncertainty, replanning every day, with constant preventive tests and the anguish of whether there would be a case, but it has also been an opportunity to explain ourselves to the world, the rest of Europe has been watching us", explains Oviedo. The Liceu has already closed the 2020-2021 season with a lower budget than usual: €39m compared to the €48-50m of other seasons and, therefore, the restrictions have not had a great impact. The cancellation of Tannhäuser in January this year also meant a significant saving.

The Temporada Alta immediately put new tickets on sale to eliminate the festival's waiting lists. With 70% restrictions, more than 25 shows had quickly sold out. Jordi Fosas, director of Fira Mediterrània, celebrated the end of the restrictions today in particular: "A year ago, when we inaugurated the fair, a curfew was declared at eleven o'clock at night and the capacity was reduced to 50%. Therefore, now we are very happy that the restrictions are over, we see a lot of enthusiasm and excitement from the public and from the sector". The only thing that Fosas regrets is the short time they have had to communicate it: "If we had known two weeks ago maybe we could have taken better advantage of it, but it is also a last minute opportunity for the public, because many shows are already sold out"

The return to pre-pandemic times, however, is not for everyone. The exception will be for concerts and festivals in enclosed spaces with crowds standing or the possibility of dancing. In this case, a maximum capacity of 70% will be allowed and the covid pass, as authorised by Catalonia's High Court, will be required. In enclosed spaces, optimal ventilation must be ensured in accordance with the required standards.

From today, the maximum number of spectators is also eliminated, which until now was set at 1,000 people in enclosed spaces (or up to a maximum of 3,000 with reinforced ventilation conditions) and 4,000 people outdoors. Outdoors, the permitted occupancy will be 100% keeping a social distance and, if it cannot be maintained, the use of masks will be compulsory. In popular culture all limitations are also eliminated. There is no limit on the number of participants in castells (human towers), theatrical or dance groups, etc., nor in the number of participants, as long as they are not situations analogous to nightlife. Time restrictions are also eliminated.