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Pre-event testing to be subsidised for live performances amid tightened COVID-19 measures

Pre-event testing to be subsidised for live performances amid tightened COVID-19 measures

A concert held during the Huayi Chinese Festival of Arts. (Photo: Ken Cheong)

SINGAPORE: The Government will subsidise COVID-19 pre-event testing for arts and culture companies that put on permitted live performances during the period of tightened measures from May 16 to Jun 13.

This will enable larger audiences to attend live performances safely, cushioning the financial impact to arts companies, said the Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth (MCCY) on Saturday (May 15).

All indoor and outdoor live performances should be deferred during the period of tightened measures, said MCCY.

However, live performances that were publicised before May 5 and are scheduled to take place from May 8 to Jun 13 may proceed with approval from the Ministry of Trade and Industry.

IN FOCUS: Tackling COVID-19 with targeted measures - the new normal for Singapore?

From May 16, audiences are capped at 100 people with pre-event testing, and 50 people without pre-event testing.

All performers must be properly masked on stage. Singing or playing of instruments that "require intentional expulsion of air", such as wind and brass instruments, are not allowed.

MCCY said it will also provide further support for self-employed people in the arts and culture sector affected by the latest measures.

The Arts and Resilience Package has been topped up over the past year to reach the current S$75 million, the ministry noted.

This amount funds operating grants, venue hire subsidies, assistance to self-employed people and assistance to support business transformation, it said.

READ: New COVID-19 measures in Singapore: What is allowed under the tighter restrictions?

SPORTS ACTIVITIES

MCCY also clarified what the tightened measures mean for other types of activities under its sectors.

For indoor and outdoor sports facilities, the capacity limit has been amended to one person per 16 sq m, or 50 people, whichever is lower.

In indoor facilities, only non-strenuous activities can continue and participants must be masked at all times.

"Activities which will result in participants lowering their masks to catch a breath will not be permitted," said MCCY.

Sharing of common equipment is not allowed indoors to reduce fomite transmission.

For outdoor facilities, people engaging in strenuous exercise can do so in groups of up to two people, including any instructor.

They must keep 2m apart. They can be unmasked when exerting themselves, but should put on their masks thereafter.

People wearing face masks at East Coast Park on Jul 19, 2020. (Photo: Try Sutrisno Foo)

READ: COVID-19: Schools to conduct CCAs online, suspend external activities

Group classes held indoors and outdoors are capped at 30 people including the instructor, or the venue capacity limit, whichever is lower.

All instructors and participants must remain masked at all times. Participants must be in groups of no more than two, with 2m between individuals, and 3m between groups.

Outdoor classes for strenuous activities that require participants to be unmasked will be capped at two people including the instructor.

READ: SportSG to set aside S$18m to help gyms, studios affected by latest COVID-19 restrictions

SportSG's relief measures for businesses and self-employed people will be extended from May 30 to cover the heightened alert period up to Jun 13.

SportSG is also looking at providing more outdoor spaces in its ActiveSG facilities for classes, said MCCY.

WORSHIP SERVICES

Congregational and other worship services will be limited to 100 people with pre-event testing or up to 50 people at a time without pre-event testing, subject to safe management measures and venue capacity limits.

Religious workers supporting these services should be kept to a minimum, added MCCY.

Worshippers can participate in worship services in groups of no more than two people.

READ: Group sizes down from 5 to 2, dining-in suspended as Singapore tightens COVID-19 measures

Masks must be worn at all times by everyone, including when speaking during congregational and other worship services. Face shields are not permitted substitutes for proper face masks.

Singing and playing of wind or brass instruments will not be allowed, and there should also be no sharing of prayer or common items.

Religious organisations can continue to use places of worship to conduct religious rites in groups of no more than two people.

All other religious activities, such as religious classes for adults and children, will be suspended, said MCCY.

READ: Additional COVID-19 antigen rapid testing to be rolled out for people with symptoms

WEDDINGS AND FUNERALS

Wedding solemnisations can continue with up to 100 people with pre-event testing or up to 50 people without pre-event testing, subject to venue capacity limits.

These limits exclude the solemniser and religious and supporting workers, whose numbers should be kept to a minimum, said MCCY.

Wedding receptions will not be allowed, in line with curbs on dining-in.

Funerals, wakes, burials, cremations, installations of niches and post-funeral rites at places of worship can involve not more than 20 attendees at any time, subject to venue capacity limits.

This limit excludes religious and supporting workers, whose numbers should be kept to a minimum, said MCCY.

Attendees should be organised in groups of no more than two people and must maintain safe distancing and be masked at all times.

DIGITAL PRODUCTIONS AND REHEARSALS

For both arts companies and religious organisations, recording of digital productions and their rehearsals are limited to 15 performers and crew members on stage and backstage at any given time.

This includes a maximum of 10 unmasked performers, of whom no more than two people can sing or play wind or brass instruments.

Arts and cultural organisations must notify the National Arts Council while religious organisations must notify MCCY before proceeding with their digital productions.

File photo of a socially distanced live music performance. (Photo: IMC Live Global)

ARTS AND CULTURE CLASSES

All speakers, participants and instructors in arts and culture classes, lectures, talks and workshops must be properly masked at all times.

Activities that cannot be conducted with masks on must be suspended.

There are to be no classes in singing and wind or brass instruments even if masked, said MCCY, adding that face shields are not permitted substitutes for masks.

MUSEUM VISITS

Arts and heritage venues such as museums can continue operations, but at a reduced capacity of 25 per cent.

Tours in museum premises can be conducted for a maximum group size of 20 people excluding the guide.

A maximum of two people is allowed in any one sub-group, with all other prevailing safe management measures in place, such as social distancing.

"It is critical that our people, businesses and Government work together to bring down the number of COVID-19 cases, to keep our community safe," said MCCY.

"MCCY understands that the tightened measures are disruptive to our sectors and have developed support packages to help our stakeholders make the necessary adjustments.

"MCCY very much appreciates our religious organisations, as well as our arts, culture, and sports businesses and communities for rallying together to implement the safe management measures. Together, we will emerge safe, and stronger."

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Source: CNA/dv(cy)

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