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Madison entertainment industry expecting a comeback in 2021

Updated: Jun. 2, 2021 at 6:17 PM CDT
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - Now that the health order has expired in Dane County, Madison’s entertainment industry is planning a comeback.

This summer, the public can start walking through these doors of the Overture Center for the Performing Arts again, for the first time since March of 2020.

“It feels wonderful to be able to be working towards opening our doors to the public,” Emily Gruenewald, Vice Pres. of Development and Communications with the Overture Center said.

After being closed to the public for nearly 16 months the Overture Center will resume rental spaces for private parties, like weddings, at the end of June, and live performance shows will begin in September.

“It’s really important for us to reopen and bring those crowds back,” Gruenewald said.

Gruenewald said the Overture Center brings about 700,000 people to the downtown area each year. Across town, it’s a similar story for the Alliant Energy Center.

“It’s great for the community,” Bill Framz, Dir. of Finance and Administration at the Alliant Energy Center said.

As well as the economy. Framz says they hold around 400 events a year and bring almost a million people to the Madison area.

“We’re really anxious to be that economic catalyst again for the community, for shopping and restaurants and hotel rooms. and getting back to business as normal,” Framz said.

Alliant Energy’s first publicly ticketed event will be the Dane County Fair on July 15. Gruenewald hopes by bringing back these large-scale events and shows, they can make up for what Madison lost in 2020.

“We can’t wait to be able to support our neighbors who have been hit so hard in the last year,” Gruenewald said. “We’re excited to see that there already is more vibrancy in the restaurant scene.”

The Overture Center will require unvaccinated people to wear masks at private events, like weddings, this summer. Staff is still considering what to do for audience members at live shows this fall.

NBC15 also checked with the Monona Terrace on their calendar for 2021. The venue already has 163 events booked.

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