The Fugard Theatre has announced that it will remain closed until further notice.
Eric Abraham, founder and benefactor at the Fugard, said the theatre will remain closed until the management is confident that staff, performers and audiences will not be at risk of Covid-19.
This will depend on the availability of a vaccine or effective treatment.
“We do not envisage this to be until some point late next year, in 2021, at the earliest. Regrettably, the majority of our staff have had to be retrenched and a small care-taking team will remain in place to ensure that the Fugard is well maintained and in a state of readiness for the day when it is safe and financially viable to re-open.
The Fugard Theatre cancelled its 2020 season, so there will be no live performances at the theatre this year.
Its general manager and producer, Lamees Albertus, said the challenge for the theatre went beyond level 3 of the national lockdown to curb the spread of the virus.
“We are having to temporarily restructure our business to make it through an indefinite time of theatre lockdown.
“It is highly unlikely that theatres will be able to operate as before until a vaccine is discovered and available. Even if the government allows theatres to open during a particular level, it will be under stringent conditions and audiences may not comfortably attend or be in the economic position to purchase tickets.”
The Fugard was one of many theatres which were affected during lockdown, including the Artscape Theatre, the Galloway Theatre and The Courtyard Playhouse.
While the doors of the Galloway and Courtyard Playhouse remain closed, the Artscape Theatre have been moving productions online.