Support for a Safe Re-Opening of Canadian Performing Arts Sector


The NAC Guide to Support the Re-Opening of Canadian Performing Arts Centres and Venues is tailored to the specific realities of the Canadian performing arts and is intended as a tool to help centres and venues navigate the path to re-opening.

We include key actions to support short-to-medium term recovery and foster long-term resilience. We look at implications for all affected groups, including administrative staff, artists, front-of-house staff, back-of-house staff, and audiences.

These NAC tools use an audit-based approach, which will allow centres to assess health and safety risks in each key location of their buildings, and to pursue recommended remediation measures.

There are recommendations on communications, and ideas for adapting standard business approaches and processes. We have also included scenarios and case studies for staging various types of performances in the age of COVID-19.

Mandatory Requirements and Best Practices 

Consulting governmental and public health directives and guidelines is critically important to ensure that re-opening plans of performing arts centres and venues meet the mandatory requirements. 

Who is this Guide for?

We recognize that there is a wide variety of performing arts organizations across Canada, in terms of the size, scale of operations, mandate and structure. For that reason, this set of resources is not intended to be a prescriptive set of guidelines. Rather, we believe they can be adaptable and practical to different kinds of organizations as they create plans for their own unique circumstances.

For every individual centre or venue, the decision to re-open should be informed by provincial and public health regulations and guidance, other resources and information, and expert advice specific to each situation.

How can this Guide help?

We hope organizations can use these resources to help represent their needs for re-opening (for example, to support financial requests), or as a supporting document to represent their readiness to open to local government or provincial health authorities.

This is an unprecedented time for the performing arts. Although our individual circumstances may vary, we all face similar challenges. By working together and sharing best practices, we can help each other not only to re-open, but to rejuvenate the Canadian performing arts, and bring the joy of live performance back to our communities in a time when it will be needed more than ever.

Additional planning tools

In the Resources section, we have shared some of our own planning tools, as well as links to some outstanding re-opening resources that are already available and/or that are being updated regularly. We will continue to update it as the pandemic continues to unfold.