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Local 5 - weareiowa.com | Des Moines Local News & Weather | Des Moines, Iowa

Ames Community Theater details pandemic challenges

From wearing masks to limited or no crowds, going to see a show hasn't been the same because of COVID-19.

AMES, Iowa — It's not every day that a smaller theater teams up with a larger theater.

But with the COVID-19 pandemic still impacting the arts, a partnership is just what the Ames Community Theater and Stephens Auditorium have created.

"The coronavirus has made this whole thing, doing theater, so much more difficult," said Stan Rabe with the Ames Community Theater (ACTORS). "You do a show for an audience, you don't do it for yourself."

"So having to make accommodations to allow people the distance that they need between each other for shows, that's the biggest challenge that we have to deal with."

As the virus has forced Iowa State University to make massive budget cuts across the board, the university announced Friday their intent to close Stephens Auditorium for good.

ACTORS will open its 65th season Sept. 17-20 at at Stephens Auditorium, but not without taking extra precautions. 

From double-casting to six feet of distance between changing stations, Rabe wants the 2020 production of "The Savannah Sipping Society" to be enjoyable for all. 

"We were glad that the city legal department said we were OK without masks [on stage]," Rabe said. "Because we didn't want to have to have the microphone between the mask and the person's face."

Tickets for the show can be purchased here.

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