Entertainment, live performance, arts and cultural activities

Current restrictions in force as part of Step 3.2 of Canberra’s Recovery Plan are outlined in the page below.

To find out more check the Changes to Restrictions page.

Restrictions

Step 3.2 - Updated 9 October 2020

What you need to do

Venue capacity:

  • Theatre-style venues can sell tickets at no more than 50% of the venue capacity up to a maximum of 1,000 tickets.

Notes on options above:

  • Businesses must not exceed the capacity limit that applies under standard liquor or fire occupancy loading and regulatory conditions of the venue.
  • Maximum capacity excludes staff.
  • No modifications can be made to venues.
  • Usable space is defined in the Public Health Direction as the space that people can freely move around in, but not including the following areas:
    • stages and similar areas,
    • restrooms, changerooms and similar areas,
    • areas occupied by fixtures, fittings, and displays, and
    • staff-only areas and areas that are closed off or not being used.
  • All performances must be ticketed and seated.
  • Space seated groups 1.5 metres apart wherever possible. An individual is counted as being their group for these purposes.
  • Record first name and phone number of all attendees. Consider using the Check In CBR App, which is free and easy to use.
  • Display a sign specifying maximum occupancy for the full venue as well as each individual usable space.
  • Manage ingress, egress and queuing of all areas, including for example for food stalls and merchandise stores.
  • Clearly display messaging for patrons to stay home if unwell.
  • Manage flow of people throughout the venue to avoid people congregating in large groups.
  • Events to consider public transport use.
  • Manage food and beverage service – ensure COVID Safety Plan is in place.
  • Follow hospitality guidance for functions and events involving provision of meals.
  • Where people spend more time together indoors such as at conventions, venues should consider risk mitigation measures they could put in place when hosting full-day conventions.
  • AHPCC Guidance notes that multi-day events are not supported at this stage.
  • If you would like to hold an event for more than 200 people, please see our new event protocol.

All businesses must ensure

  • Good hygiene – find out more on the Protect yourself page.
  • Signage that clearly displays occupancy allowance at entrance to each venue or space. Download the maximum capacity signage that best suits the needs of your venue at our Business resources page.
  • Frequent environmental cleaning and disinfection – download the WorkSafe cleaning checklist for more information.

Further advice

  • Public Health Directions are in place that legislate how businesses can operate. It is important you are up to date with the latest Public Health Directions. If you don’t comply with a Public Health Direction, you may be fined.
  • Venues are required to ask for a first name and contact number of all attendees. If details are provided, they must be recorded with a date and time of attendance and stored for 28 days. Consider using the free Check In CBR app, which is free and easy for businesses to use. For more information, download the factsheet about collecting and storing customer information.
  • If venue is being used for the supply of liquor, service of a meal, or another function/activity, the provisions relevant to those activities need to be complied with.
  • Audiences at performances must be seated.
  • Encourage patron groups not to mingle with other groups.
  • Live performers should try to maintain appropriate social distancing requirements wherever possible.
  • For live music performances, singers should try to stand at least two metres away from other band members/singers as well as audience members.
  • Kiosks/bars can be open with appropriate COVID-safe measures in place.
  • Cinemas and movie theatres can sell seated tickets at no more than 50% of capacity of each cinema or movie theatre up to a maximum of 200 tickets.
  • Open air drive-in cinemas must prepare a COVID Safety Plan, and can operate with up to 200 vehicles per drive in cinema, per session.
  • Guided tours at galleries, museums, national institutions and historic sites are permitted.  All activities should seek to minimise the number of instructors to be present.
  • Where there is a performance to an audience, businesses must comply with the relevant restrictions for performances within the Direction.
  • Businesses can choose to open their communal facilities, but before doing so must undertake a risk assessment and mitigation process and develop a strict cleaning program – to be outlined in their COVID Safety Plan.
  • Avoid gatherings taking place in communal areas, and encourage patrons to leave straight after dancing.
  • See the Keeping safe at work section  for more information on how to keep customers and workers safe.
  • Visit the Changes to Restrictions page for more information.

Information for businesses

Financial Support

The ACT Government is continuing to support the ACT community as we begin to cautiously reopen our society and economy and learn to interact as the COVID-19 pandemic continues.

Visit the Supporting local businesses page for the full detail of the support available for businesses and eligibility requirements.

Businesses in this sector may be eligible to receive:

Find out what else the ACT Government is doing to support Canberrans on the Economic Survival Package page.

Find out more about the Commonwealth Government’s Economic Response to the Coronavirus on the Treasury website.

Keeping safe at work

No matter what industry you are in, there are a number of ways you can keep your customers, staff and community safe while trading, including:

  • encouraging cashless transactions or tap payments
  • using tape to mark 1.5 metre distances on the floor for customers
  • limiting the number of people allowed in the premises at the one time
  • telling staff to stay home if they are feeling unwell.

The ACT currently has Public Health Directions in place that legislate how businesses can operate. It is important you are up to date with the latest Public Health Directions.

If you don’t comply with a Public Health Direction, you may be fined.

Download these posters to help guide customers and staff:

Find out more about applying the one person per 4 square metres rule by downloading the factsheet.

Safe Work Australia has a guide to assist employers to meet their work health and safety duties in relation to COVID-19.

You can download the WorkSafe cleaning checklist to assist with implementing health and hygiene measures at your workplace.

Other resources are available to download as part of the Signs and factsheets page.

More information about infection control for businesses can be found at the infection control training and resources page.

Download the ACT Health advice for employers and employees about managing COVID-19 health risks as restriction measures lift.

Check out the case studies to see how local businesses are ensuring they operate safely.

Support at work

Where it works for your business and employees, working from home is still encouraged at this time.

If your staff cannot work from home, physical distancing and good hygiene practices should be maintained.

Visit the Protect yourself page and the Signs and factsheets page for more information.

Find out more about how you can support your employees by downloading the How to support your employees during COVID-19 fact sheet.

To find out more about your obligations under the Work Health and Safety Act 2011, visit the Work, Health and Safety and COVID-19 page on the Access Canberra website.

For further industry specific advice, visit the Safework Australia website.

A new, free, and dedicated Coronavirus Mental Wellbeing Support Service is now available to support all Australians to manage the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on their mental health and wellbeing. Visit the Mental health and wellbeing page for more information.

Information for employees

Financial support

The ACT Government is providing practical support, such as rebates and the freezing of some government fees to reduce pressure on household budgets.

Visit the Supporting families and household page for more information on these measures.

For those who have lost their job, or who have been significantly impacted by COVID-19, the Jobs for Canberrans Fund provides work opportunities for people in casual or semi-skilled workforce.

You can also read about everything else the ACT Government is doing to support the ACT Economy on the Economic Survival package page.

Casual and part-time workers have been among the hardest hit with widespread unemployment across a range of sectors.

A Hardship Fund for workers experiencing financial hardship due to the pandemic will be created to support Canberrans who are unable to temporarily work under a COVID-19 direction or health guidance.

They will be eligible payments of up to $1,500 depending on an individual’s circumstances (such as available sick leave through their employer). More information including details on how to access the payment will be available soon.

Keeping safe at work

Physical distancing and good hygiene practices should be maintained.

Visit the Protect yourself page and the Signs and factsheets page for more information.

Find out more about applying the one person per 4 square metres rule by downloading the factsheet.

You can download the WorkSafe cleaning checklist to assist with implementing health and hygiene measures at your workplace.

Other resources are available to download as part of the Signs and factsheets page.

More information about infection control for businesses can be found at the infection control training and resources page.

To help manage your COVID-19 health risk, you may want to develop your own COVID-19 action plan. A COVID-19 action plan template can be found at the Department of Health website.

Download the ACT Health advice for employers and employees about managing COVID-19 health risks as restriction measures lift.

Check out the case studies to see how local businesses are ensuring they operate safely.

Support at work

Where it works for you and your employer, working from home is still encouraged at this time.

If you are unable to work from home, physical distancing and good hygiene practices should be maintained.

Visit the Protect yourself page and the Signs and factsheets page for more information.

To find out more about what you can do to keep yourself safe at work, and your employers obligations under the Work Health and Safety Act 2011, visit the Work, Health and Safety and COVID-19 page on the Access Canberra website.

For further industry specific advice, visit Safework Australia.

It is important to remember that if you cannot work from home and you are sick, you must not attend your workplace.

You must stay at home and away from others. You should get tested for COVID-19 if you have any symptoms of COVID-19. Read more about the symptoms on the Symptoms and getting tested page.

A new, free, and dedicated Coronavirus Mental Wellbeing Support Service is now available to support all Australians to manage the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on their mental health and wellbeing. Visit the Mental health and wellbeing page for more information.

acknowledgement icon
Acknowledgement of Country

We acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the ACT, the Ngunnawal people. We acknowledge and respect their continuing culture and the contribution they make to the life of this city and this region.

Last Updated: October 13 2020