For many long months now, the cultural life of the city has been completely fallow for the second time, after at least a very small amount of culture was possible again in the summer. At the moment, negative reports dominate the headlines and there is as little perspective for culture creators as there is for gastronomy or club operators. In this uncertain situation, the head of the Department of Culture, Ina Hartwig, discussed the further course of action in the Corona pandemic with the directors of the Opera, Schauspiel, Alte Oper and Mousonturm. At the moment, on the basis of an order from the state of Hesse, performances and events are suspended until 31 January, after which it is not yet known how the situation will continue. However, all signs currently point to an extension if not further tightening of the lockdown measures.
"Unfortunately, the beginning of the year does not bring the relief we had hoped for. However, our cultural institutions and their employees need planning security; they cannot adjust their performance schedule from month to month. Together with the directors, I have therefore developed solutions for a perspective opening, which take into account the pandemic and the individual organizational conditions of the houses," explains Head of the Department of Culture Ina Hartwig.
So the Alte Oper and the Mousonturm will resume their performances at the beginning of March, the Opera and the Schauspiel will start in April. The prerequisite is, of course, that the infection events and the current legal framework allow this. Workshop and rehearsal operations will continue on a reduced scale, taking into account the hygiene measures in force at the Schauspiel, the Oper and the Mousonturm.
"The spring gives us hope that the situation will ease somewhat and that the houses will be allowed to open their doors to the public again. People are missing culture, and artists are missing audiences. We have been through a long lean period, culture has made great sacrifices and I am very grateful to the directors and staff for their solidarity, their foresight and their responsible handling of the situation. They have bridged the closure period with creative digital offerings, which are well received, but cannot replace the real experience of music, dance and theatre on stage. I therefore think it is incredibly important that when the measures are relaxed, cultural institutions are among the first to be allowed to reopen. We need to bring the creative power back to the stages and fill the houses with life," explains the head of department.
The digital offers can be found on the respective websites of the houses. We can only hope that the infection situation will soon allow not only these houses, but all cultural venues in Frankfurt - from theatres and cinemas to museums and concert halls - to reopen.