Bulgaria further loosens measures to allow cinemas, museums, galleries and libraries to open

Theaters, opera houses and other spaces for preforming arts will remain closed

Open air stage at Borissova Gradina Park in Sofia (archive)

Today Health Minister Kiril Ananiev issued a new order, which further loosens the measures, which the government adopted early March to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Cinemas will open from tomorrow but will be allowed to use up to 30% of their seating capacity.

Concerts and other preforming arts may only take place at open air stages and following strict sanitary and physical distance protocols. The 30-per-cent-capacity rule applies in this case as well, although it is not exactly clear how it could be implemented at – for example – open air concerts where seat capacity is a fluid concept. Strict measures to keep physical distance, however, must be in place.

Culture Minister Boil Banov said holding performance art shows and concerts in closed spaces poses too great a risk at this point, so those will only be allowed outside for now.

Museums and galleries can also open from tomorrow. There is no mention of controlling the number of people allowed in indoor museums and galleries, only to assure distance and sanitary measures.

Meanwhile the confirmed cases of coronavirus infections rose to 1990 today, 27 new since yesterday afternoon. Currently 368 people are in a hospital, 50 are in ICUs. 93 people with the virus have died since the first few cases were discovered on March 8.

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