If you plan on spending any Seattle summer nights in performing-arts venues, you’d be smart to keep a stocked face-mask stash.

When King County dropped its mask mandate in March, many of Seattle’s performing arts organizations didn’t follow suit, cooperatively deciding to require masks and proof of vaccination or a negative coronavirus test in their facilities until at least May 31. As June rolls in, most of those organizations have not shifted in their protocols.

Seattle Times arts recovery coverage

Seattle’s thriving and vital arts-and-culture community has been rocked by the coronavirus pandemic and the only thing certain about the future is change. The Seattle Times takes an in-depth look at the sector’s recovery in 2022 with support from the M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust. We will explore how both individuals and institutions are doing in the wake of the pandemic; track where relief money is going; and look at promising solutions to challenges facing our arts community. We invite you to join the conversation. Send your stories, comments, tips and suggestions to artsrecovery@seattletimes.com.


ACT Theatre, which ended its season in May, will reevaluate and make a decision about future protocols prior to its next season’s start in September. Seattle Opera and PNB’s seasons end this month, and they will reevaluate before their next seasons start in the fall. After its current season ends in August, 5th Avenue Theatre will also reevaluate. 

The Seattle Symphony is requiring masks and proof of vaccination or a negative test at all Benaroya Hall events through June 26, according to its website

Seattle Theatre Group, which runs the Paramount, Neptune and Moore theaters, is still requiring masks and proof of vaccination or a negative PCR test at its venues but is actively having conversations about protocols in preparation for the coming months, according to Gabrielle Nomura Gainor, senior communications manager.


As of June 1, Town Hall no longer requires proof of vaccination or a negative test, but it is still requiring masks at its events through July 31, according to its website.

While most chain multiplexes made masks optional starting in mid-March, many indie movie theaters continued requiring them. Grand Illusion Cinema, a small movie theater operated by about 30 volunteers, says it does not currently have any plans to stop requiring masks.

“We are going to continue to require masks since there seems to be a new surge occurring,” manager Brian Alter said in an email. “Things have been going well here, all things considered. Folks are coming to see movies, and no one has issues masking up to visit us.”

Seattle’s arts scene has a lot to offer in the coming months, but for now, it’s best to check venue websites for their most current coronavirus safety requirements before hitting the town.


This coverage is partially underwritten by the M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust. The Seattle Times maintains editorial control over this and all its coverage.