VICTORIA -- The Chemainus Theatre has cancelled the remainder of its 2020 season due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

"This is one of the most challenging and heartbreaking decisions we have ever had to make,” the theatre says in a statement on its website.

The restriction of large gatherings for the foreseeable future and social distancing challenges are the main reasons the theatre cites for closing.

Since 1993, the theatre has welcomed over 70,000 people through its doors every year.

The Chemainus Theatre is one of the largest performing arts organizations in Western Canada and is renowned for attracting professionals from across North America.

Shows that have been cancelled are:

  • The 39 Steps
  • Beauty and the Beast
  • Glory
  • Joyful Noise
  • Elf: The Musical
  • The House at Pooh Corner

It is uncertain if these shows will be back for the 2021 season.

Ticket refunds are available as well as 2021 credits and donation opportunities.

The Chemainus Theatre Crisis Relief Fund has been set up to help the theatre withstand the closure until it's able to reopen.

More information about the 2020 season cancellation can be found on the theatre's website.