There won't be any queues at the Q for some time. Queanbeyan's Performing Arts Centre has closed its doors to the public while the pandemic lasts.
The centre has cancelled or postponed shows up to July. The Queanbeyan Museum has also been closed, and the Queanbeyan-Palerang Heritage Festival, scheduled for this month, cancelled.
"While this is disappointing, it is extremely important that we do what we can to stop the spread of the virus," QPRC communications and engagement officer Nathaniel DeHoog said. "This is the sort of time where entertainment can be a real comfort and distraction, but the health and safety of our community is the most important thing."
The Q theatre hopes to reopen in October with Free-Rain Theatre's production of Mamma Mia!, originally scheduled for July.
"People will be looking for entertainment where they unwind together and have a great time," Mr DeHoog said. "When the time is right, we will fulfil that promise."
Also that month, Queanbeyan Players Inc. will stage The Sound of Music, which played to packed houses in 2014.
Most venue hirers, Mr DeHoog said, plan to move their shows to the end of the year, or early next, while some single-night shows have been cancelled.
Council staff have contacted all ticket holders to advise them of the status of shows and suggest a replacement ticket.
"Like all venues that offer cultural and recreational activities, the impact on the theatre will be significant," Mr DeHoog said. "The bigger impact, however, will be on the performing artists who have lost jobs as a result of closures and the serious outcomes for the performing arts in Australia."
Ms Somes said the Free-Rain group had been disappointed but not surprised by the postponement. The creatives and cast have discussed rehearsal options for when social distancing and isolation policies change; until then, they are staying in touch by social media.
"Theatre people are known for their caring and supportive ethos, and this has never been more evident than now in these unprecedented times," Ms Somes said.
The colourful, energetic Mamma Mia! will be particularly welcome after the lockdown.
"It's a really 'feel good show'," Ms Somes said. "So much fun, with wonderful ABBA songs, fantastic choreography, plus a romantic comedy with lots of heart."
The production is directed by Jarrad West and Xander Unikowski, and choreographed by Michelle Heine. It features a delightful taverna, trendy costumes, funky sound effects, and groovy playing, Ms Somes said.
Until the Q reopens, Mr DeHoog wished everyone well during this difficult time.
"As soon as we can, we will be back to entertain them. The arts in general, and the Q specifically, will have an important role in rebuilding a sense of community cohesion and well-being."
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