The public must now show a COVID test or proof of vaccination


Want to see a show at the Florida Repertory Theater?

You will need to wear a face mask and also bring documentation: either proof of vaccination or negative results from a recent COVID test.

The Fort Myers downtown theater announced its new COVID-19 safety guidelines on Thursday. Florida Rep reopens on October 1 with the cabaret show “Let’s Fall In Love”.

“The pandemic closed the doors of our professional theater in March 2020, so we are really looking forward to getting back on stage this fall,” artistic director Greg Longenhagen said in a press release announcing the new policy late Thursday. -midday.

“While we look forward to engaging, entertaining and providing a much needed escape to our community, we are committed to doing so in the safest way possible. “

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Other theaters and venues in Southwest Florida require face masks and social distancing, but Florida Rep appears to be the first to require a negative COVID test or proof of vaccination.

Safety protocols have been informed by recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control, the Florida Department of Health and the Actors’ Equity Association, Longenhagen said. He added that they are “similar to those put on by other professional theaters in Florida and across the country.”

“While we look forward to the day when we can relax these protocols,” he said, “right now, it puts our best assets forward to ensure the safety and health of everyone as we let’s open our season. “

Greg Longenhagen, new artistic director of the Florida Repertory Theater

According to the press release, all theater patrons aged 12 and over must present a negative COVID-19 PCR test administered by a health care provider or official testing center within 72 hours of the performance. Or they may show a rapid negative COVID-19 antigen test given within 24 hours of show time.

Both physical and electronic presentations of documents will be accepted.

The Florida representative will also accept proof of vaccination at the door, the statement said. Florida law, however, prohibits companies from requiring customers to show proof of vaccination. So the Florida rep is only leaving this as an option for members of the public.

“If a client prefers,” the statement read, “an official vaccination record showing the client is fully vaccinated against COVID-19 (at least 14 days from the final dose) can be voluntarily presented at the door as an acceptable alternative to a negative COVID-19 test result. “

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In addition to its new rules for clients, Florida Rep also required that all employees, artists and volunteers be fully immunized. And everyone in the theater – both employees and customers – must wear face coverings except when eating or drinking.

Other security measures at Florida Rep include:

  • Disinfection of bathrooms, halls, rest areas and other spaces before each performance.
  • HVAC systems that exceed recommendations for safe air quality by Actors’ Equity Association regulations.
  • Upgraded HVAC systems in all performance spaces that include ionization hydro-peroxide filters to further clean the air.
  • And portable air filters strategically placed throughout the building.

According to the press release, the Florida representative’s leadership will re-examine its new protocols as the season progresses and may revise them based on changes in the pandemic and guidance from the CDC.

For more information, call 332-4665 or visit

Connect with this reporter: email [email protected] or connect on social media at Charles Runnells (Facebook), @charlesrunnells (Twitter) and @ crunells1 (Instagram).

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