MILWAUKEE - The curtains have been closed for seven months in downtown Milwaukee, as the Milwaukee Repertory Theater turned to digital platforms to keep people engaged, but now, the theater is now ready to reopen to the public.
"We are starting to come back open to the public with Jacob Marley's 'A Christmas Carol,'" said Chad Bauman, executive director. "It's our first time we are welcoming people back, and it starts Dec. 1."
Bauman said it's great news for staff, artists and production crew members who have been hit hard during the closure because of the pandemic.
"I think like, 80%-plus of performing artists have been furloughed or unemployed," said Bauman. "Here at Milwaukee Rep, we had a loss of ticket sales of about $7 million in ticket sales in the last seven months."
The show — with a smaller, innovative production— must go on! (In a safe and socially distant manner, of course.)
"Safety is our #1 priority," said Bauman. "So we are only going to be selling 25% of our theater. In a 720-seat theater space like we have, we are going to sell 180 tickets to make sure we space people out."
They're also requiring PPE, in addition to implementing cleaning protocols.
"We have a Clorox Total 360 system, which is an electrostatic sprayer which basically disinfects every single surface in our theater before and after every single show," said Bauman.
These efforts are aimed at allowing people to feel comfortable coming to show their support.
"It's important for downtown theaters, and it's important for the city to take baby steps toward reopening," he said.
The sale starts online Monday, Oct. 12 at 7 a.m. Inventory is limited and with significantly discounted prices, tickets may go fast. For more information, visit the Milwaukee Rep's website.