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Netherlands builds socially-distanced venue

A temporary purpose-built, socially-distanced theatre is opening at Jaarbeurs exhibition and convention centre in Utrecht this autumn.

The Scala Theater is currently being built in two halls of Jaarbeurs and will remain in place from 25 September until 31 December.

The temporary construction consists of three floors with 129 boxes, separate staircases and walking paths. The venue can cater to up to 1,050 guests, who will be seated above, below and next to each other around the stage.

The design and layout, which includes spacious entrances, exits and reception foyers, comply with all National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) guidelines, according to organisers.

The temporary construction consists of three floors with 129 boxes, separate staircases and walking paths

The concept for The Scala Theater originated from a collaboration between Jaarbeurs, Coreworks, Mertens AVR, IINII and Fraai Projecten, as well as AT NEXT and Senf Theaterpartners which will be responsible for programming.

André Hazes will perform on The Scala Theater’s opening night and artists including Crook, Nick & Simon, OG3NE, Rolf Sanchez, Tino Martin and Waylon will also deliver concerts in the new construction. The venue will also host comedy, family shows and special performances.

The temporary venue model follows that of the UK’s Virgin Money Unity Arena (cap. 2,500), which will host 29 events in 26 days.

The Netherlands relaxed its coronavirus regulations from 1 July, removing the capacity limit for seated indoor and outdoor events, provided fans have undergone health checks before entry and a 1.5 metre distancing rule is observed.

Last week, the Netherlands announced a second rescue package for cultural businesses which includes €150m to be allocated towards music venues and theatres.


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