Bosses at Bristol Hippodrome have decided to stop all shows amid soaring numbers of coroanvirus patients.
The theatre’s new We Will Rock You was set to premiere this evening (Monday) but with just hours to go until the curtain was due to rise, organisers decided to cancel the play.
During a daily press conference Prime Minster Boris Johnson told people to stop all non-essential contact as the UK’s death toll rose by 19 in just one day. It now stands at 55 people.
Employees were also urged to work from home and all mass gathering will no longer be supported by the government.
In a statement on Facebook, a Hippodrome spokesperson confirmed their venue would now be closing.
It reads: “In response to the Prime Minister’s statement this evening, advising the UK public to avoid unnecessary social contact, including in theatres, we regret to inform you that shows in all Ambassador Theatre Group UK venues are temporarily suspended with immediate effect.
“We understand that this decision comes as a disappointment, and a massive inconvenience for those of you already on the way to a venue this evening, but ultimately we all want the same thing: the health and safety of our communities, and we believe this is the correct decision to make.”
Scores of customers responded to the news.
One person wrote: “Being told 30 mins before the show starts is dreadful. You say it’s to avoid social contact, but everyone turned up due to late cancellation and is hovering about.”
While another said: “That is so sad..for all your staff! Right decision..if my show is cancelled I am happy for you to keep my money..hopefully more people will do the same so you can continue to entertain us once this is over..thank you.”
Someone else wrote: “Such a shame we were due to see will we rock you Saturday but entirely the correct decision.”
Several restaurants and pubs have announced they will be closing as people begin social distancing.