Costa Mesa’s Segerstrom Center Resumes Schedule With Outdoor Events

By Jack Bradley
Jack Bradley
Jack Bradley
Jack Bradley is a daily news reporter for The Epoch Times based in Southern California.
November 20, 2020Updated: November 22, 2020

The Segerstrom Center for the Arts, one of the preeminent performing arts venues in Orange County, California, has announced the return of live outdoor events following an extended shutdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

A series of live performances, movie nights, and wellness classes are going to be held in the Costa Mesa center’s Julianne and George Argyros Plaza to comply with COVID-19 guidelines. The first live show on the schedule is a night with comedian Louie Anderson on Nov. 27.

“We have reduced the Argyros Plaza capacity in accordance with state and city guidelines. This allows for appropriate social distancing,” Tim Dunn, Segerstrom’s director of public relations, told The Epoch Times.

“We have also developed an extensive set of safe practices that will allow our patrons to feel comfortable and safe when they attend performances and events.”

The outdoor shows will use group-seating “pods” for every party. Each pod can accommodate up to six people, and will be spaced at least 8 feet away from surrounding pods.

Patrons will be required to wear face coverings and will be ushered to their designated spaces. Temperatures will be checked and hand sanitizer will be available throughout the plaza.

“People must wear masks until they arrive at their pods. [There will be] hands-free temperature taking and brief health questionnaires,” Dunn said.

Casey Reitz, the center’s president, said the reopening is just a sampling of what’s to come.

“We are thrilled to be able to welcome people back to the center, safely distanced and protected with our new protocols, for cultural celebrations by many of our audience-favorite artists and special events on the Argyros Plaza,” he said in a press release.

“Each honors one of the great art forms that we have all shared here: Broadway, jazz, cabaret, motion pictures and the diversity of cultural traditions. And this is just a start.”

Live performances are set to return to Segerstrom the night after Thanksgiving, with Anderson as the center’s opening talent. Tickets to see the three-time Emmy Award winner, best-selling author, and star of stand-up specials and sitcoms will be $240 per pod.

Other announced performers include Megan Hilty, star of the TV musical drama “Smash,” and Grammy Award-winning vocalist Steve Tyrell, who sings standards and other timeless songs. Pods will cost $450 and $480 respectively.

Movie nights have been scheduled to begin in the plaza on Nov. 20 with a screening of the classic “Mary Poppins.” Other scheduled films include “Sister Act,” “Elf,” and a double bill of “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer & Frosty the Snowman.” Tickets for Movie Nights are $30.

The center will also host its annual multicultural holiday celebration, “Holidays Around the World,” in the plaza on Dec. 5 and Dec. 6. The celebration will include entertainment, music, and even “snowfall.” Tables and chairs will be available for crafting, Dunn said.

“Because the events are outside, people will probably want to dress warmly,” Dunn said.

The Segerstrom Center for the Arts, originally called the Orange County Performing Arts Center, is the county’s largest performing arts organization. It opened in 1986, and is the home to various concert halls and theaters.

In June, the center laid off over 60 percent of its employees following a mandatory shutdown and canceled schedule during COVID-19.

For more information about the events, contact the Center Box Office at 714-556-2787. The box office is open weekdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.