COVID-19 gives unique opportunities for the Embassy Theatre

Local News

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – The coronavirus pandemic along with the shutdown has impacted almost every aspect of life. This is no exception for the Embassy Theatre. However, it has not been all negative.

At the beginning of the pandemic, the Embassy Theatre had shows scheduled months in advance. Once COVID-19 hit, the theater knew it had to be proactive to make sure the shows and entertainment continued.

“When we spent that time in lockdown, our team immediately went into planning for how the world was going to look for the next six months to two years,” says Carly Myers, Chief Marketing Officer at the Embassy Theatre. “Everything we’re doing from a safely perspective [with] COVID has been fully approved by the state [and] the health departments.”

These safety measures and the plans set in place have allowed the theater to maintain operation on a number of events. Events though some shows have rescheduled once, twice or even three times.

“We had a lot of our shows on the schedule… came back to us and say ‘we’re going to reschedule. Let’s work together to get another date on the calendar,'” says Carly Myers, Chief Marketing Officer at the Embassy Theatre. “Most shows have not canceled, they’ve just postponed or rescheduled with us.”

Prior to the pandemic, many national and international touring performances had tour stops at the Embassy Theatre. But during the pandemic, this has stopped or been limited. This has given the Embassy Theatre the opportunity to focus on the immediate community.

“We went into a robust strategy as a team to bring the local programing, which we already do, like Summer Nights… things we bring ourselves to the theater… and partner with local organizations, peer arts groups and organizations, to figure out a way to allow them to present their event here in a way that reduces COVID exposure as much as possible,” Myers explains.

Examples of groups that have partnered with the Embassy Theatre include The Civic Theater, the Three Rivers Music Theater, the Summit City Loco Moco Classic, the Cinema Center and more.

As more restrictions are lifted as the state moves into Stage 5, Myers says the Embassy will not be impacted by the increased capacity limits.

“Stage 5 doesn’t really impact what we’ve been doing from June,” Myers says. “Because we’ve been doing this now for several months.”

Myers says that partnerships and shows are continually being announced even as the pandemic is in full swing.

On Monday, the Embassy Theatre and the Three Rivers Music Theatre announced that they are partnering to present the 2020-2021 Cabaret Series on the Embassy stage. Another show, Cinema Center’s Hobnobben Film Festival will also take place in-person at the Embassy Theatre. Myers says another announcement is expected next week.

Moving forward, Myers says that the Embassy Theatre plans to partner with groups to bring about discussion on social change. One example includes a Fort Wayne pastor who delivered Martin Luther King Jr.’s ‘I Have a Dream’ speech.

As of now, reschedules are going into 2022. However, the theater plans to continue partnering with area organizations and groups while intentionally planning a more diverse lineup.

“We will continue to have national tours, whether it’s a musician, a comedian [or] a Broadway show,” Myers says. “All of that stuff will continue to be a part of what we bring to the community.”

More information on the Embassy Theatre can be found on the theater’s website.

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