Daemyung performance street was one of the most vigorous youth streets until the late 1990s. However, due to the relocation of Keimyung University and Daegu University to other campuses, the number of empty stores in the surrounding shopping districts has increased sharply. As a result of the recession, rent for space became cheaper, and artists who needed workspace and actors who needed practice rooms gathered, naturally turning the area into artist streets.
When I visited Daemyung Performance Street for coverage, the ʻ2020 Daegu International Healing Performing Arts Festivalʼ was in full swing. This festival is a three-month small theater-oriented performance art festival that runs from August 1 to October 31. It is the nationʼs largest theater festival where 26 performances, including official and free-participating works, can be seen.
However, the festival is located in Daemyung-dong, which suffered a disturbance from COVID-19. Due to the nature of small theaters, it seemed that there were not many visitors, perhaps due to fears of watching performances in narrow and enclosed spaces. Meanwhile, quarantine and disinfection of the theater were carried out thoroughly before the performance to prevent COVID-19. Visitors were also given preventive measures such as measuring body temperatures, filling out questionnaires, using hand sanitizer, passing a disinfectant mat, and lining up in 1-meter intervals before the performance.
As the ʻ2020 Daegu International Healing Performance Arts Festivalʼ is designed to help small theaters and Daemyung Street plays struck by COVID-19 to regain vitality, I hope more people will visit the theater culture safely while keeping the quarantine rules.