Uncertain events – News from Portugal

Show producers and promoters want clarification on the new guidelines for cultural events.

“It’s very confusing. In all phases of this pandemic, we began to feel the effects of this poor communication long before the measures were put in place,” said the agency Rafaela Ribas, of the association. Espectacle, which represents agents and producers, specifying that it has requested more information from the General Inspectorate of Cultural Activities (IGAC).

The promoter Álvaro Covões, of the Association of Promoters of Shows, Festivals and Events (APEFE), also told the Lusa agency that clarifications have been sought from IGAC, the Directorate General of Health (DGS) and the Ministry of Culture, because everything is “a little confused”.

“We try to be sure, with whoever decides and who is in charge, what the rules are,” he said.

The stake is the entry into force, Wednesday, December 1, of new measures to contain the spread of the coronavirus, in particular directives on the submission or not of negative tests for cultural events, organized outdoors or indoors.

The updated directive 028/2020 on cultural events, published on the DGS website, indicates that in order to participate in an event of this nature you must present a digital certificate, full proof of vaccination or proof of tests laboratory (for those who are not vaccinated).

This directive refers certain details to another document, directive 014/2021 of the DGS – not yet disclosed -, on large-scale events, whether sporting, corporate or cultural.

According to this directive, to which the Lusa agency had access, “sporting events, events that do not have marked places, events that involve the mobility of people through different spaces or events that take place in temporary or improvised spaces are considered large, from 5,000 people outdoors or 1,000 indoors “.

The DGS considers that to attend these large-scale events it is necessary to present a certificate of vaccination, proof of recovery from the disease or proof of a laboratory test, but an exception is made for “cultural events in fixed performance venues ”. .

For the two associations of promoters and producers of shows contacted by Lusa, the rules are not entirely clear given the variety of types of places and cultural events, the capacity, whether for the standing public or sitting and whether or not includes alcohol consumption.

“Apparently the rules for theaters with seating are maintained, ie with a vaccination certificate and the use of a mask. With standing seats, it would be [access] with a negative test “for everyone,” said lvaro Covões.

Rafaela Ribas deplores the lack of clarity in the changes announced, with direct effects on ticket purchases or the postponement and cancellation of shows.

“This cascade of cancellations started three or four weeks ago when people started talking about the possibility of taking action. Anyone who has had to do things yesterday, today or tomorrow is still not quite sure what That creates instability in who does the shows, but it also creates instability in the people who buy tickets, ”said Rafaela Ribas.

In this same directive 014/2021, the DGS specifies that in the current epidemiological situation, any event in person constitutes “an increased risk for public health”.

Lusa asked DGS, IGAC and the Ministry of Culture for further clarification on these new guidelines, but did not receive a timely response.

James C. Tibbs