Three days after an actress at the Chetco Pelican Players stage production of Dracula tested positive for COVID-19, and following a weekend of three live performances before a “full house,” the board of directors decided in a 4 to 1 vote to proceed with the next weekend’s productions if the same actress tests results were negative Oct. 8.

On Friday, Oct. 8, the actress's rapid test results came back negative.

“The show will go on,” said Mary Anne Trailor, president of the CPP.

During the board meeting, one of the members stated that she immediately informed the cast, crew and board of the Covid-positive result, and that “she has been contacting those who made reservations that (Oct. 1 - Oct. 3) weekend.”

During the performances that the actress may have been Covid-19 positive, none of the actors were wearing a mask. According to Trailor, actors are exempt from wearing masks during live productions.

Trailor also stated that she believes the risk of transmission to the audience was low because the nearest row to the actors is 8 feet away, and up to 20 feet away for those sitting in the last row. However, one board member and a guest at the board meeting expressed concern that at the end of the play, when several of the actors play dead behind a set piece that looks like a wall, the separation is closer to 6 feet.

The venue seats 80, and according to Trailor it was a “full house, or about three quarters full,” she said. Trailor added that the usual meet-and-greet where the actors mingle with the audience after the plays did not occur.

The Curry Coastal Pilot attended the Oct. 7 board meeting after receiving a call from a Brookings resident who did not wish to be identified, but said a friend of his attended the Dracula production on Friday, Oct. 1, then developed a fever three days later. However, the Pilot was unable to connect with the unidentified person who allegedly became ill, and the anonymous source informed the Pilot on Oct. 8 that a test for Covid-19 for the friend came back negative.

In addition to the Covid-positive cast member, there was some concern about mask wearing. On Sept. 30, a vandal defaced some of the theater’s signs and Dracula promotional banners, including a sign at the entrance that requested members of the audience to wear a mask. However, according to Trailor, the cast and crew did not notice that the mask-wearing sign had also be destroyed, and last week’s shows did not include a verbal request to wear a mask. Trailor said she was unable to verify whether all members in the audience were wearing masks.


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(2) comments

Theater girl

There was never a mask required sign at the theater

Woodsmoke Gold

Theater girl is right. Before the COVID case got reported a couple weeks ago, there were never any signs about masking at the entrance or inside the building.

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