CCAC’s COVID-19 Plan for Theatre Events

3/23/21 Update:

The State of Maryland has begun lifting capacity restrictions, meaning live entertainment venues can open with 50% capacity. In light of this announcement, the Arts Council has updated this plan for the events in our theatre. We’re excited to continue to welcome our audiences back for concerts, films, and more in the safest manner possible.

We continue to track public health guidelines and will make changes accordingly.

CCAC Procedures and Policies for Health and Safety

Enhanced Cleaning

  • Doubling the amount of professional cleanings of public spaces.
  • Daily sanitizing of staff offices, lobby, galleries, and restrooms with more frequent sanitizing based on level of attendance.
  • A ULV fogging machine will sanitize all seats, armrests, railings, and handles in the theatre and lobby after events.
  • Careful sanitization of backstage area, stage, and technical equipment after events.

Screening and Sanitization

  • Staff and volunteers on premises will complete COVID-19 screening prior to each shift, with emergency backup plans to maintain service in the event of a sick staff member.
  • Staff and volunteers will wear masks at all times when there is potential for interaction with the public.
  • All guests over the age of 2 will be expected to wear a mask while in the building.
  • All performers will complete a COVID-19 screening questionnaire before their scheduled performance.
  • Ticket holders will be emailed a CDC-approved wellness self-assessment before the performance. We’ll have liberal exchange and refund policies for ticket holders who are unable to responsibly attend.
  • Hand sanitization stations will be in multiple locations throughout the building.
  • Staff and volunteers will receive additional regular training to administer safe COVID-19 plans.


  • Regular CCAC staff will continue working remotely as much as possible, with reduced staff on duty during regular business hours.
  • There will be designated entry/exit points and one-way traffic in certain areas.
  • Enhanced signage will be visible throughout the building reminding visitors of social distancing, wearing face masks, and our other health policies.
  • Occupancy in the building will be monitored to stay within CDC- and state-recommended capacity guidelines for the safety of visitors.
  • Staff and volunteers will wear face masks when interacting with the public.
  • Concessions and refreshments will be temporarily limited or absent from most events.
  • Outside food or drink is still not permitted in the theatre except for personal water bottles.
  • The water fountain will not be available for use. Water bottles are available upon request.
  • A newly installed HVAC system will improve air flow throughout the building (including the theatre).

Ticketing and Seating

  • Theatre events will have limited tickets available to accommodate the 50% capacity limit.
  • Due to both limited tickets and best health practices, guests are encouraged to purchase tickets online and to use paperless tickets when possible.
  • Unless in pre-approved cases, we will not seat parties of more than 6 individuals together in a group.
  • Seating will begin 45 minutes before an event in order to ensure sufficient time for safe ushering.
  • An usher will be in the theatre before and during the event to monitor that all CCAC policies and CDC guidelines are being followed.

Theatre Events

  • Performers will remain on stage or backstage throughout their stay, at least 12 feet from any audience member and with limited interactions between staff members or volunteers.
  • Performers will be given early access to stage for tech checks in order to facilitate early seating.
  • Audience members will be required to wear facial coverings throughout the entire performance.
  • Events will be conducted without an intermission to reduce chances for close contact.
  • Upon completion of events, the audience will be encouraged to leave the theatre one row at a time, starting from the back, to avoid bunching.

Known Exposure of COVID-19

  • To the extent possible, records will be kept of all staff, volunteers, and audience members present during an event to assist with contact tracing efforts.
  • In the event of known staff/volunteer/audience exposure: 
    • affected staff/volunteer will self-quarantine for 14 days and/or seek medical assistance
    • additional staff will receive COVID-19 test if on premises with affected individual
    • contact information for audience members will granted to public health authorities
    • CCAC will remain closed to the public until sufficient staff are proved COVID-19-negative
    • CCAC will thoroughly re-sanitize the building before reopening