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After Walt Disney World reopened in the beginning of July, several entertainment offerings were temporarily closed due to ongoing union negotiations between the Actor’s Equity Association and Walt Disney World. We now have exciting entertainment news: the Actor’s Equity Association has given its members the green light to return to the stage and begin performing again!
After about a month without live shows at Walt Disney World, the actors and actress will again be returning to add some magic to the theme parks.
According to a Union statement, a memorandum of understanding has been signed which will get the actors back to work.
When Walt Disney World originally began recalling Cast Members back to work, members of the Actors Equity Association were called back for rehearsals following the week of June 23rd.
On June 25, the union made a public statement asking for regular COVID testing for its members and the ability to wear a mask while on stage performing since they can not practice social distancing throughout their day.
The following day, Walt Disney World rescinded all of its recall notices for Equity members.
Today, Disney announced that there will be free on-site testing available for Cast Members and their family members at Disney’s Maingate Complex. Shortly after, the Actors’ Equity Association released the following statement:
“We have been consistent that testing is an important part of ensuring a safe workplace for Equity performers, and today, I’m pleased to see that Disney World has agreed,” said Kate Shindle, President of Actors’ Equity Association. “With the news that Disney will make testing available for Equity performers and others in the park, I’m happy to announce that Equity’s executive committee has signed a memorandum of understanding with Disney for Equity performers to return.”
The return of live entertainment to Walt Disney World is wonderful news, particularly for parks like Disney’s Animal Kingdom and Disney’s Hollywood Studios. These two parks have several live shows, and with their return will come many more options for Guests at the parks.