The Denver Gazette


Denver Arts Center opens — to vaccinated adults and kids with proof of negative test.

BY JOHN MOORE Special to The Denver Gazette

The Denver Center for the Performing Arts, which has not presented indoor programming since the outbreak of the pandemic in March 2020, today announced its reopening vaccination policy in conjunction, it says, with other tenants of the Denver Performing Arts Complex including the Colorado Symphony, Colorado Ballet and Opera Colorado.

DCPA President and CEO Janice Sinden said beginning Oct. 1 and continuing indefinitely, all patrons 12 and older must be fully vaccinated before attending indoor seated performances at the Arts Complex.

Children under 12 — who are presently ineligible to receive the vaccine

—must instead provide proof of a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken within 72 hours of the performance start time, or a negative COVID-19 antigen test taken within six hours of the performance start time. This, she said, follows the lead set by theatres on Broadway in New York.

Also, audience members ages 2 and up must wear masks at all times unless consuming refreshments in designated areas. Food and beverages will not be permitted inside the theatres.

Present plans call for the Colorado Symphony to return to the Boettcher Concert Hall on Sept. 17 with Chopin Piano Concerto No. 2 with Emanuel Ax; the Colorado Ballet to return to the Ellie Caulkins Opera House on Oct. 8 with “Giselle”; DCPA Theatre Company to return to the Bonfils Theatre Complex on Nov. 19 with “A Christmas Carol”; and DCPA Attractions to reopen the Garner Galleria Theatre on Dec. 11 with “The Other Josh Cohen.” Broadway touring productions will resume when Disney’s “The Lion King” returns to the Buell Theatre on Dec. 2.

Because all of those cultural partners are separate tenants of the Arts Complex, other promoters may implement rules for their own events, based on the performers’ wishes. For example, an evening of Bill Maher is scheduled for the Buell Theatre on Sept. 11 and, so far, no restrictions have been announced for that event. However, an evening of Herbie Hancock is scheduled for Sept. 17 in the Ellie Caulkins Opera House, and Hancock has requested proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test taken within 48 hours of the show.

“Over the past 18 months, the health of our extended theatre family has never been more top of mind,” Sinden said in an email that went out to ticket-buyers today. “You make our work possible and we want you to thoroughly enjoy our return to the stage knowing that we have done our best to ensure your safety.

“Please know that our decision has been informed by ongoing, monthly audience surveys that currently show 96 percent of our patrons have been vaccinated and the vast majority are more likely to attend if we implement a vaccination requirement.”

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The Gazette, Colorado Springs