BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) – A familiar sound is back in Capital City restaurants, live music.
“That’s how we socialize down here. We get together with a bunch of food, good music, couple drinks, and we have a good time,” Brad Moran said.
Pit-N-Peel on Government St. is welcoming artists back to perform indoors. This comes after the new phase 3 guidelines lifted restrictions on indoor performances.
Elvondae Rayvon, the owner of the popular seafood restaurant, says bringing back live music is great for his business.
“Music has always been a part of the culture, and when you tie it to food, it just brings a festive atmosphere,” Rayvon said.
With the music comes guidelines. According to the State Fire Marshall, here are the list of must-have requirements if singing and wind instruments are part of the performance:
- Capacity should not exceed 50% even if the business type has a greater allowable capacity per the proclamation (exception: a venue with permanent or fixed seating like in a theater).
- The HVAC system that serves the space where the performers and audience will be should conduct six air exchanges per hour.
- There should be 20 feet between performers and the audience (exception: if plexiglass is used as a separation mechanism, this distance can be reduced to 10 feet).
- The audience is to be seated, spaced, and remain seated throughout the performance.
- Audience members must remain masked when not actively consuming food or beverage.
- Performers must remain masked when not actively performing.
- Performers must remain six feet apart (9×6 if wind instrument musicians)
- Wind instrument bell covers should be used in all settings.
In addition to the above must-haves, only one of the below options are also needed if singing and wind instruments will be used:
(1) Direct airflow toward the stage/performers at a minimum rate of 2,000 cfm (a fan that meets that minimum rate is suffice).
(2) An independent HVAC system serving just the performance area.
(3) Use of a physical barrier, like plexiglass, in front of sources of high-velocity aerosols including singers and musicians playing wind instruments. (individual plexiglass stands are acceptable).
(4) Require singers to wear well-fitted masks, which allow for proper vowel formation while keeping the mouth and nose covered, throughout the entire performance. Require wind instrument performers to wear masks with slits at the mouth to fit mouthpieces for playing their instruments only.
Mitch Rodgers is the General Manager at Bin 77. For the last year, his restaurant has had live music outside and says he’s going to keep it that way despite the new guidelines.
“It happens to cut down on our seating capacity because the guest has to be so far from the performers,” Rodgers said.
Phase 3 is set to expire at the end of March.
There are a few additional health screening requirements for the performers and some placement and sanitation guidelines for businesses. Go to: OpenSafely.la.gov for more information.