UPDATED JANUARY 22, 2021
Here’s an overview of what the COVIDSafe Summer Restrictions step means for the Victorian cultural sector. For further information please see the Arts and Entertainment Services Sector Guidance from the Victorian Government.
To save you time we’ve summarised how the new restrictions relate to music:
- You must carry a face mask with you at all times when you leave home, unless you have a lawful reason not to.
- It is required that you wear a fitted face mask throughout the performance and when paying or using the facilities. Masks do not need to be worn when you are seated while eating and drinking.
- Please observe social distancing (1.5m)
- There are no limits on how far you can travel to visit an entertainment, arts or cultural venue.
- You are recommended (but not required) to be 2m apart from each other and 5m away from the audience
- Masks required to be worn when performing indoors if you’re not singing or playing a brass/woodwind instrument.
Live Music Venues (e.g. pubs/clubs/hospitality)
- Hospitality venues (eg. pubs/clubs) are no longer seated-service only, if they use electronic record keeping they can 1 person per 2sq metres* for both indoors and outdoors with no other cap (there are no density limits if the patron number is under 25). Patrons are permitted to stand up to watch a band, drink, play pool etc. Social distancing should be observed.
- Dance floors can have up to 1 person per 4sqm. Maximum 50 people dancing at one time per dance area (such as in a nightclub with multiple dance floors). There is no strict definition of a dance floor but venues should discourage patrons from dancing in areas that aren’t a designated dance floor.
- Large venues that host more than 500 people at one time must publish their COVIDSafe Plans online.
*density quotients should be calculated per room
Indoor Seated Venues (e.g. theatres/music halls)
- Indoor seated venues can have up to 75 per cent of fixed seated capacity with maximum patron cap of 1000 people. For non-seated areas, venues can use the two square metre rule if using electronic record keeping. If using paper-based records, the four square metre rule applies.
Outdoor Venues (e.g. amphitheatres)
- Outdoor seated venues can have up to 75 per cent of fixed seated capacity with maximum patron cap of 1000 people. For non-seated areas, venues can use the two square metre rule if using electronic record keeping.
- Outdoor non-seated entertainment venues can open. They can apply the two square metre rule if using electronic record keeping.
Rehearsal and Recording Studios
- Recording/rehearsal studios can have up to 1 person per 2sqm.
- If rehearsing at home, it is recommended (but not required) that you wear a face mask when you can’t keep 1.5 metres distance from other people however it is no longer mandatory.
Festival and Events
- If a venue is holding a public event outside of ordinary day-to-day operations they’ll need to follow the Public Events Framework.
- There are plans for a phased return from 25% – 100% capacity and a 3 x tier system depending on the scale of your event (Tier 1 5000+, Tier 2 500-5000, Tier 3 <500)
For sector guidance for arts and entertainment services businesses within Victoria, click here.
If you have any questions or concerns, feel free to contact us on email@example.com
See the full statement from the premier below which was delivered on December 6:
2020 has seen us embrace a new vocabulary.
We’ve become experts on “Reff rates” and “roadmaps” – on following the rules and sticking to restrictions.
Week after week, change and change – we adapted, and readapted. But we did it, because it meant keeping our state safe.
Until we have a vaccine – and even then, until we have a widely distributed vaccine – some aspects of these rules and restrictions must continue to be part of our reality.
At the same time, and because of the efforts of every Victorian, we’re able to end this year with far fewer limits on what we can and can’t do.
Our new “COVIDSafe Summer” will be in place until at least the end of January, giving Victorians a bit more certainty about what the next couple of months will look like.
These are the restrictions that will see us through the summer months – and living as normally as we can until we get a greater sense of what the rest of 2021 will look like.
Under the changes, and from tonight at 11:59pm, masks will only be required in a limited number of places: on public transport, in rideshare vehicles and taxis, in some retail settings including indoor shopping centres, supermarkets, department stores and indoor markets.
While masks are no longer mandated in most circumstances, the evidence is clear, wearing a face-covering makes a real difference in slowing the spread of the virus – so masks continue to be recommended indoors or outdoors when distancing can’t be maintained.
As has been previously announced, Victorians will be able to host up to 30 people in their home. Outdoor gatherings in public places – the beach, the park – can increase to 100.
Density limits in our pubs, restaurants and cafes will shift to 1 person per 2sq metres for both indoors and outdoors with no other cap. The use of electronic record keeping – a QR code – will be mandatory.
And for small operations, there’ll be no density limits if the patron number is under 25.
For retail and beauty services, businesses will be able to move to 1 person per 2sq metres – if they also introduce electronic record keeping. For businesses where that’s just not possible, the existing density limits will continue to apply.
The cap for funerals and weddings will also be removed, subject to a new density limit of 1 person per 2sq metres. For those who want to dance on their special day – or maybe even the Nutbush – dancefloors will be able to host up to 50 people, with a density of 1 person per 4sqm.
The same rules will apply to nightclubs. But remember, the health advice still stands: no hugs, no handshakes and if you’re feeling sick, you need to get tested and stay home.
The same new density limits will apply for community facilities, like our libraries, RSLs, and community halls.
In gyms, the density limit will move to 1 per 4sq metres – with exercise classes limited to 50 indoors and 100 outdoors.
And more relaxed restrictions for our entertainment venues will see more Victorians enjoying everything that makes us the cultural capital of Australia.
For those sick of only seeing their colleagues in a square on the screen, we’ll be able to move to a 50 per cent return for office workers by 11 January, after considering the public health advice at the time. For the Victorian public service, up to 25 per cent will be able to return to the office from 11 January, moving up to 50 per cent on 8 February.
Details of further changes will be made available online.
As always, this won’t be everything for everyone. But these are the careful steps we can take as we continue to protect our state and everything we’re built.
Victoria, enjoy your summer.
You’ve earned it.