WINNIPEG — The Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre had hoped to salvage what it could of its “reimagined” 2020-21 season when COVID-19 hit, but those plans have now been scrubbed.
Affectionately called Season 2.0, Royal MTC has now shelved that idea and is leaving the curtain closed on performances this season, a move artistic director Kelly Thornton calls “devastating,” but necessary to keep everyone safe.
“Season 2.0 required artists to travel from across Canada, and the scope and scale of these plays were chosen well before social distancing was a requirement,” Thorton said.
“With social distancing, our venues are severely restricted for audience numbers which makes the revised Season 2.0 lineup impossible. We’re profoundly sad for our staff, our artists and our subscribers. But in this great intermission, we continue to express our deepest gratitude to our volunteers, staff, artists, audiences and Board of Trustees. We continue to benefit from the guidance of our Trustees, the emotional and financial support of our patrons, and the graciousness of our audiences.”
For now, Royal MTC is pressing pause on any further programming announcements too far into the future.
But it’s not all bad news for theatre-goers. A series of microprogramming in partnership with the Canadian Museum for Human Rights will take place in late November at a safe social distance. Further details on Tiny Plays, Big Ideas: A Festival of Human Rights can be found at RoyalMTC.ca.