The Brag Media
News February 26, 2021

Dancing returns to Adelaide, while Canberra increases venue capacity

Dancing returns to Adelaide, while Canberra increases venue capacity

Dancing in small venues will be allowed across South Australia from today.

However the dance ban is still in place for larger venues which have a 1,000-plus capacity, and all will still need COVID-19 management plans.

“But if you’ve got a smaller venue, a venue of under 200 patrons, dancing is permitted, as long as you can abide by the normal restrictions, QR codes, COVID marshals, one [person] per two square metres,” SA premier Steve Marshall said.

“In venues between 200 and 1,000, dancing is also permitted on a dance floor, a designated area, for up to 50 people at a time, and again, they will need to abide by those restrictions.”

SA’s chief public health officer Nicola Spurrier explained the continued caution about larger clubs.

“When you get a large number of people in a poorly-ventilated, small room and they are all dancing together — particularly disinhibited with alcohol — then we know this is the set-up for superspreading,” she remarked.

Frustration with the dance ban boiled over in recent times. Venues like Loverboy which applied for the reinstatement of dancing complained it had not heard back from authorities after six weeks.

A petition called Re-instate Dancing in South Australian Music Venues,  launched by Dan Gill of Groundfloor Radio, has currently drawn 11, 256 signatures of its 15,000 target.

Last Saturday (February 20) during the Adelaide Fringe, DJ Pedro Moshman, who was playing ambient music outdoors at The Garden of Unearthly Delights, had the plug pulled by organisers as too many in the crowd were dancing despite a “No Dancing” sign at the entrance as part of its COVID-Safe management plan.

In the meantime, entertainment venues in Canberra and the rest of the ACT could from last weekend allow patrons to stand while drinking and eating indoors.

Large indoor performance venues (with forward-facing and tiered seating, such as theatres and arenas) can have events up to 75% capacity, provided the events are ticketed and seated, and a COVID Safety Plan is in place for each event.

The one person per two square metre rule must be applied to any other useable space within the venue that does not form a part of the individual theatre.

It’s good timing for Canberra’s latest nightclub, The Mile High Club, which opens at Zoo Bar on Saturday (February 27) with a headlining set from Sneaky Sound System.

Event organisers can apply for an exemption to host up to 10,000 people, up from 8,000, and outdoor gatherings up to 1,000 people, up from 500.

Cinemas and theatres can sell up to 75% capacity of each individual cinema or theatre, provided that their COVID Safety Plans have been endorsed by ACT Health, otherwise, they remain at 65% capacity.

Music businesses need to register and be using the Check In CBR app by Saturday March 6. Those who don’t will no longer be compliant with the public health direction and penalties may apply.

GIO Stadium and Manuka Oval can have 100% capacity for fixed seating, provided events are ticketed and seated and a COVID Safety Plan is in place for each event.

Related articles