The Denver Center for the Performing Arts Broadway is planning to reopen in December with The Lion King.
KAREN LEIGH: We also learned today that by the end of the year big touring Broadway shows will be back on stage indoors in Denver. Jeff Todd joins us live tonight at the Denver Performing Arts Complex. And Jeff, more waiting, but at least a good sign that things are going to get back to normal.
JEFF TODD: Karen, we heard today that there are 3,500 jobs that are tied to this complex. And many of the people, the officials in charge have been concerned, until now, to actually make the plans to get people back into the theaters.
JOHN EKEBERG: We can't wait to get back in the theater.
JEFF TODD: In December, the Broadway tours of "The Lion King" will be the first major show to return to Denver.
JOHN EKEBERG: There need to be sets built, costumes built, rehearsals, getting everything planned to go out on the road in the semis.
JEFF TODD: But a steady stream of productions will flow starting next winter and into 2022, including "Hamilton" next February.
JOHN EKEBERG: We do need the time to make sure we can get out and do it right.
JEFF TODD: Finally, some good news for one of the hardest hit industries. And it's had a ripple effect. Signs of the economic impact of the theaters being closed are visible all around this part of downtown Denver.
JOHN EKEBERG: Folks coming down to the arts complex feed the restaurants, feed the hotels, other businesses. So we all really rely on each other as one big industry.
JEFF TODD: Smaller events with an emphasis on the outdoors are being planned for the summer. But getting people back into the theaters will still be a slow process as the pandemic winds down.
JOHN EKEBERG: We really need a high probability for success in order to get that engine back up and going.
JEFF TODD: And the jobs, from the box office to back stage.
JOHN EKEBERG: We're definitely coming back. And I just ask folks to hang in there with us.
JEFF TODD: In 2018, the arts brought in nearly $2 billion to the metro area. But in order to get this industry back into shape, it will take quite some time before people are back into these theaters.
We're live in Denver, Jeff Todd, covering Colorado first.