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Safety & Security

COVID-19 SAFETY POLICIES & PROCEDURES
Updated April 12, 2022

Find the most up-to-date COVID-19 Safety Policies and Procedures followed at all First Stage classes, rehearsal halls, and performance spaces, including our home at the Milwaukee Youth Arts Center.

Please note: While the City of Milwaukee's Mask Mandate has expired on March 1, 2022, all audiences will be required to properly wear masks at performances through the end of our 2021/22 season. While other venues may be following modified protocols, First Stage is continuing to require audiences to wear masks in order to honor the pre-existing commitments made to our artists, our multi-generational audiences, and our staff. Thank you for your understanding.

Theater Performances

First Stage is implementing the following safety protocols as we welcome you back for live performances for the 2021/22 season. These protocols were developed with the support of the City of Milwaukee Health Department and in alliance with other organizations within the larger Milwaukee arts community. Please review these protocols as you reserve your tickets and visit our theaters:


Masks Required
For all performances through the 2021/22 Season

Masks are required to be worn properly by all patrons while anywhere inside the performance venue, regardless of vaccination status.


Security at the Marcus Performing Arts Center

Upon entry to the Todd Wehr Theater, you will walk through a security scanner to check for any items not permitted in the building. While purses and small bags are allowed, please leave larger bags, backpacks, or other items at home. Review Security Procedures at the Marcus Performing Arts Center. Please allow ample time for parking, security and COVID safety checks before the performance.


School Group Matinee Performances

For our school matinee performances, all audience members will need to properly wear masks for performances. Please contact (414) 267-2962 or fieldtrips@firststage.org with questions.


Other Ways to Help Keep Everyone Safe

  • Digital Playbills and Paperless Tickets will be issued to all patrons to reduce contact points between audiences and theater staff.

  • No intermission will be held for any of our performances, and concessions and merchandise will not be sold on site. This measure is to alleviate congestion throughout the lobby.

  • Hand-sanitizing stations will be available throughout our performance venues.


If you are feeling ill or are presenting an COVID-19 symptoms, please stay at home. Options of ticket exchange, ticket donation, or refund are available if the Box Office is contacted up to six hours prior to the performance.

Please note: Safety protocols will be updated in accordance with our performance venues requirements. Please visit this website for additional details and updates to these procedures.

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Theater Academy Safety

In accordance with the Milwaukee Youth Arts Center guidelines and the CDC recommended guidelines, masks are now optional within all Theater Academy classes starting on March 7, 2022.

As we move ahead, we will be equally supportive and respectful of those that are ready to remove masks, and those who will continue to wear them. We will continue to follow the CDC recommendations and make adjustments when necessary. We are happy to discuss concerns with families – contact us at academy@firststage.org.

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Theater in Education

First Stage will welcome school groups back to our theaters for performances beginning January 2022, as well as in-school residencies, classroom theater workshops, and an interactive touring show.

First Stage Theater in Education staff will adhere to all safety standards in accordance with the schools' procedures and CDC protocols.

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Milwaukee Youth Arts Center

The Milwaukee Youth Arts Center (MYAC) follows a Family Health and Safety Guide (updated March 2, 2022) for those staff, students, families, and guests in the building. 

Effective March 7, 2022, MYAC will move to "mask optional" in all spaces in our buildings. People may choose to mask at any time. Please note: audiences for performances at the Milwaukee Youth Arts Center will be asked to continue to wear masks to honor the pre-existing commitments made to artists, audiences, and staff for those performances. 

MYAC will maintain the following measures:

•  Encourage a mask friendly environment
•  Provide hand sanitizing stations throughout the facility
•  Encourage proper handwashing
•  Enhanced facility cleaning with FDA approved products
•  Increased fresh air flow cycling, high quality HEPA air filters through all spaces and Bipolar ionization air filtration, which neutralizes airborne pathogens throughout the facility


MYAC asks that if you feel ill or are presenting any COVID-19 symptoms, please stay home.

**Please note that as we continue to monitor pandemic considerations, MYAC and its partners’ protocols are subject to change based on CDC, state, and local guidelines.

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Get Vaccinated...Please

First Stage joins other Milwaukee venues, restaurants, cultural institutions and businesses to urge Milwaukee-area residents to please get vaccinated in order to protect our community, safely continue to visit and enjoy public places of entertainment and dining, and work to slow the spread of COVID-19. Find a COVID-19 vaccine near you at: https://vaccines.gov/

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