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New York May Be Lifting Mask Mandate, but Broadway Keeping It for Audiences

Broadway audience members will still be required to wear masks in theaters at least through April—despite New York’s decision to roll back some mask mandates.

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Meanwhile, spectators, performers, backstage crew and staff will all be required to be vaccinated through the same time period, Deadline reported.

The Broadway League, the trade group that represents theater owners and producers, noted on its website that the requirements would remain in place. It currently requires that all guests five and older be vaccinated.

New York Governor Kathy Hochul announced Wednesday during a press conference that the state would be letting its mask mandate expire on Thursday for indoor businesses that do not check vaccination status. However, face coverings will still be required in several indoor spaces such as schools, public transportation, homeless shelters, prisons and, now, Broadway theaters.

“I want people to know: this pandemic is not over. It is not over,” Hochul said at the briefing. “That’s why we’re still going to maintain protections for vulnerable populations in areas where people are very contracted because I want people to feel safe.”

This is a developing story and will be updated as more information becomes available.

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Update 2/9/22, 2:50 p.m. ET: This article has been updated with additional background information on Broadway’s mask and vaccination guidelines, as well as New York’s easing of some mask mandates.

Broadway audience members will still be required to wear masks in theaters at least through April despite New York’s decision to roll back some mask mandates. Above, Jefferson Mays as “River City’s own Mayor George Shinn” at a celebration honoring The Music Man’s 21 young cast members making their Broadway debut in “The Music Man” on Broadway at The Winter Garden Theater on February 8, 2022 in New York City.
Bruce Glikas/Getty Images

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