The Broadway production of The Kite Runner announced Tuesday a policy requiring masks for viewers only at the Friday night performance. The new hybrid policy is the first of its kind on Broadway after theater owners lifted the industry-wide mask mandate on July 1.
Since then, masks have been optional in Broadway theaters, and individual productions have also been allowed to set their own guidelines for viewers. The decision to host The Kite Runner, an adaptation of the 2003 novel that opens on Broadway July 21, is aimed at immunocompromised guests or those who may be uncomfortable sitting in an optional masked audience to attend the show. The policy begins August 1st.19th of February. “There were a number of people, including friends, colleagues, even a doctor, who had expressed concern about coming to our show or any other show without a masked audience,” said lead producer Victoria Lang. “We thought why not? devote at least one performance a week to a masked audience so that anyone who wants to see the show has an opportunity,” he said.
Friday night is usually one of the most popular nights on Broadway, with people in attendance and more expensive tickets.While bringing a new play to Broadway (a typically risky endeavor that such a policy could fuel), Lang said producers chose Friday night because they felt it was easiest for sponsors to schedule be. to boost sales, but it wasn’t specifically done to boost sales,” he said. Plays, The Minutes and American Buffalo, reintroduced a mask mandate. Both limited runs, which were mandatory for all performances, closed as scheduled in the July.To make the production decision, Lang said he consulted with the show’s co-producers and then informed the Broadway League, the trade association for theater owners and operators, and the show’s cast and crew. The theater plans to put up signs at the box office, inside and outside the theater advising that it is a masked performance. Theater ushers will enforce the policy, Lang said.
The overall impact of versus mask-less visits on Broadway remains unclear as industry-wide numbers have been hit by lower tourist numbers, as well as canceled performances and COVID concerns -19. However, Lang said she and the producers will monitor demand and interest in Friday night performances of the play and then add more performances as appropriate.The limited run is scheduled to run at the Helen Hayes Theater through October 30. “If there are more requests for more features, we certainly have the opportunity to do that,” Lang said.