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The Oamaru Opera House is set to host its first major post-lockdown show at the end of July.

Director Frances McElhinney said Kitchen Chaos would be “rollicking fun” for the whole family, sure to produce belly laughs from children who relish slapstick and “outrageously funny” shenanigans.

Tickets were not yet on sale.

Many local people had taken part in a survey the opera house had run to help plan its future schedule of shows, Mrs McElhinney said.

“We had a really good response.”

The opera house would continue to limit its audiences to 100 people, collect contact tracing information, and enforce distancing through allocated seating and controlled foot traffic.

The survey asked respondents how likely they were to attend shows at Levels 2 and 1 with smaller, distanced audiences, and what anti-Covid-19 measures were most important to them.

Respondents were also asked if they would participate in follow-ups to see how opinions were developing on those subjects.

Many were happy to continue being involved, Mrs McElhinney said.

Meanwhile, staff have been redeployed into other areas needing attention during the Covid-19 restrictions – such as working on roading or property projects for the Waitaki District Council.

All staff had therefore been retained and benefited from being able to work with council colleagues for the wider benefit, Mrs McElhinney said.

The restrictions had also allowed the opera house management to look at how it operated and refresh itself.

Staff were now eager to channel their creativity into once again providing the artistic and cultural elements that enlightened and enlivened the community , Mrs McElhinney said..