Live from New York — and Studio 8H in Rockefeller Center — it's (almost) Saturday night! But how exactly will the return to studio work for the late-night sketch comedy in the midst of a pandemic?
Saturday Night Live's new season kicks off on Saturday, October 3, in Rockefeller Center, with Fargo's Chris Rock as the host and Megan Thee Stallion the musical guest. And with the return to studio (after ending last season with episodes produced remotely from the casts' homes) comes a live audience. But there is a list of COVID-19 policies for anyone requesting tickets to dress rehearsals and live shows.
Those requesting tickets must do so for anyone in their "social bubble," which is "a group of people related to unrelated, who have repeatedly entered into close contact (defined as less than six feet), with all others in that group, on multiple occasions prior to the night of the show."
The guests who are then selected must follow a list of guidelines. Upon arrival, they must take a mandatory, self-administered COVID-19 test, the results of which will be given before the show. Temperature checks are part of check-in, and anyone with a temp of 100.4 or higher will not be admitted. Those accompanying that person may be denied admission as well. If anyone tests positive for COVID-19, no one from that group will be granted admission.
While inside the building, everyone must wear a mask at all times. Bandanas, gaiters, and masks with vents are not allowed.
Audience members must answer the following questions before being granted admission: Are you exhibiting any symptoms related to COVID-19? Have you exhibited any symptoms to COVID-19 in the last 14 days? Have you had a positive COVID-19 test within the past 14 days? Have you been in close contact with anyone with COVID-19 symptoms, or anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19, within the past 14 days? Have you traveled to any of the following states in the past 14 days? (That list changes based on NY State guidance.)
It's a new world, but at least SNL is coming back!