COVID-19 Precautions at VCO

Updated: Dec 13, 2020



As we continue our new season with preparation for The Gondoliers, we recognize that we are still dealing with COVID-19. Our priority is to provide our participants with an experience that maximizes their safety.


Participants have already voiced that they are grateful to be back playing music, as it brings them both relief and joy. We feel that this service is critical to the health and well-being of our participants.


We've decided to cancel in-person rehearsals but continue with recordings for individual participants, while under the guidance of the Provincial government and Waterloo Region Public Health.


As of this published date, performing arts facilities and organizations operate under the indoor gathering limit of less than 10 participants (see the Ontario.ca COVID-19 Response Framework for more information on the restrictions and allowances). Rehearsing or performing - for a recorded or broadcasted event - is permitted, and performers and employees must maintain 2 metres physical distance except for purposes of the performance.


Most recently under the Nov 27, 2020 Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID-19) Act - and previously under the the Oct 3, 2020 amendment to Reopening Ontario Act Stage 3 - we fall under the exception of indoor mask enforcement as an organization of people performing or rehearsing in a film or television production or in a concert, artistic event, theatrical performance or other performance. However we do require face coverings during breaks, and encourage the use of face coverings while playing (strings) in any in-person meetings.


Read more below to learn about all the COVID-19 measures VCO currently has in place to maximize participant safety. Please note that this list is regularly updated.


Current VCO COVID-19 Precautions for The Gondoliers - as of December 2, 2020


Screening - Any person with symptoms of COVID-19, who has travelled outside the country in the past 14 days, is feeling unwell, or has been in contact with someone who has symptoms is not permitted at VCO engagements. Participants must sign documents confirming that they have not experienced any of the above.


Risk Mitigation - In consultation with our venue, partners and the tools provided by the Federal and Provincial governments, we've implemented a number of measures to reduce risk.


For rehearsals, this means no in-person meetings of any kind. Participants will rehearse from home and submit practice recordings in preparation for the final audio recording.


For recording, this means participants are given the option to record from home with acceptable equipment, or record individually in-person with three (3) staff members in a safe and reliable manner. In-person recordings are conducted with a physically-distanced entry procedure including hand sanitizing, physically-distanced seating arrangements, regular sanitizing of shared spaces, and more.

Recordings will take place in a large gym with an air purifier, with only the three (3) staff members and the participant present. Participants will be required to sanitize completely before and after the recording. The participant will be set up 16 feet away from the staff members, the recording equipment and chair will be set up beforehand, with sanitization occurring before and after each participant. The staff members will be wearing masks at all times and will not come within 6 feet of the participants.


As an organization of people performing or rehearsing in a film or television production or in a concert, artistic event, theatrical performance or other performance, we are not required to ensure all participants wear face coverings as of Oct 5, 2020, however we do require face coverings during breaks, and encourage the use of face coverings while playing (strings).


For filming, this means indoor filming is conducted with a physically-distanced entry procedure including hand sanitizing, regular sanitizing of shared spaces, and more. We encourage face coverings during breaks for all participants on both indoor and outdoor sets, require staff members to wear them at all times, and require them when on set with the dancers. For the duration of scenes, masks are removed, physical distancing is implemented to the best of our ability, and participants are required to lip-sync only to reduce risk.


Contact Tracing - a complete list of all names, emails, phone numbers, and addresses of our participants is readily available for contact tracing.


Testing - Lead performers who will not be able to maintain social distancing during filming are asked to get COVID-19 tests and provide test results within one week of the filming start date.

Past VCO COVID-19 Precautions for Hansel & Gretel - before November 9, 2020


Screening - Any person with symptoms of COVID-19, who has travelled outside the country in the past 14 days, is feeling unwell, or has been in contact with someone who has symptoms is not permitted at VCO engagements. Participants must sign documents confirming that they have not experienced any of the above.


Risk Mitigation - In consultation with our venue, partners and the tools provided by the Federal and Provincial governments, we've implemented a number of measures to reduce risk.


For rehearsals, this means a physically-distanced entry procedure including hand sanitizing, physically-distanced seating arrangements, regular sanitizing of shared spaces, and more. As an organization of people performing or rehearsing in a film or television production or in a concert, artistic event, theatrical performance or other performance, we are not required to ensure all participants wear face coverings as of Oct 5, 2020, however we do require face coverings during breaks, and encourage the use of face coverings while playing for (strings).


For filming, this means indoor filming is conducted with a physically-distanced entry procedure including hand sanitizing, regular sanitizing of shared spaces, and more. We encourage face coverings during breaks for all participants on both indoor and outdoor sets, require staff members to wear them at all times, and require them when on set with the dancers. For the duration of scenes, masks are removed, physical distancing is implemented to the best of our ability, and participants are required to lip-sync only to reduce risk.


Contact Tracing - a complete list of all names, emails, phone numbers, and addresses of our participants is readily available for contact tracing.


Testing - Lead performers who could not maintain social distancing during filming were asked to get COVID-19 tests and provide test results within one week of the filming start date. All those tested reported negative results.


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© 2020 Vera Causa Opera

Registered Charity #: 77901 9892 RR0001