The COVID-19 pandemic has brought many uncertainties to our world but one industry that suffers the most is that of the arts. Like small businesses, the arts struggle due to being less widely known and aren’t deemed essential.
While streaming services like Netflix, Disney+ and Hulu are likely to be largely unaffected by the pandemic, artists that rely on live theatre and performing are completely out of work at the moment. Live theatres are financially struggling with the inability to put on any shows or performances.
The good news is that many live theatres around the Puget Sound are starting to adapt and run productions virtually, giving artists their lives and jobs back. Some are moving their education programs online while others are performing Zoom-style shows. Either way, these theatres are innovatively getting through this pandemic.
Tacoma Musical Playhouse has since moved its educational programs online. As stated on their website, the preschool and kindergarten class will be going virtual this year to put on “The Rainbow Fish Musical,” “Where The Wild Things Are” and “Winnie The Pooh” Sept. 15 to Oct. 16. They have also shifted their after school programs to a virtual platform as well.
Tacoma Little Theatre may have pushed their season line up to next year but their education programs are still proceeding as scheduled. They have programs for anyone from first grade to adulthood with classes ranging from beginning tap to improv to British dialect. All classes are set to meet on Zoom and will occur during the months of September to November.
Centerstage Theatre in Federal Way still plans to provide in person shows this season but the dates have yet to be determined. The first two shows of the season, “Theatre Magic” and “1940s Radio Christmas Carol,” will be held virtually and are hoping to be able to hold the remaining three shows in person but plans are subject to change.
Lakewood Playhouse will continue to hold its array of education programs on a virtual platform. These classes will be for all ages and include skills such as improv, dance and scenic design.
While, these are not the only theatres that are using innovation to succeed in the pandemic they are a strong few. Live theatre will come out stronger than before with this new sense of innovation and creativity instilled in these companies. The curtain will open again, it’s just intermission.