Live events return to the Rialto Theatre

Published: Aug. 1, 2021 at 10:15 AM MST
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TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - It’s been over a year since one of Tucson’s oldest theatres, the Rialto Theatre, hosted a live event. That all changed Saturday.

The house was packed for the theatre’s first live event since the pandemic began.

″We’re very excited to start live events. We’re also being very cautious because we’re watching the science and everything that’s happening in our community as far as health. So it is very exciting, but every day we’re a little nervous and changing to make sure that we can bring live events back and do it safely within our community,” Rialto Theatre’s Executive Director Cathy Rivers said.

The Muay Thai kickboxing event, “Rise of Prospects,” made its return Saturday night after being cancelled last year due to COVID-19. With the concern of rising COVID-19 cases across the state, Rivers says they are listening to the science and doing what they can to keep people safe.

″We have masks at the door. We are asking people to please wear a mask if they’re comfortable, and we do have protocols for health and safety in place here at the Rialto Theatre,” Rivers said.

Some of those protocols include a mandatory vaccination policy for employees, encouraging everyone to mask up regardless of vaccinations status, and sanitizing stations throughout the theatre. The fighters were no exception to the safety measures.

″If they haven’t been vaccinated, they had to be tested within a 24 hour period, and then we take temperatures and check all of that as well,” Rivers said.

Audience members had the choice to wear masks, but the majority decided to go without. Rivers said they will continue to listen to the CDC and local health officials about the next step for theatre, especially with growing concerns of the Delta variant.

″It could mean we shut down again and that would be a shame. I know everyone wants to be out in public, eat at their favorite restaurants, go to movies, come to live shows,” she said. “

“It would be very sad if that happened and that’s why it’s really important to be responsible for ourselves and the community by listening to the science and taking the precautions that are suggested.”

The Rialto has a full schedule of shows coming up, but they are taking it one day at a time.

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