Preston Schreffler as Professor Henry Higgins and Stacia Smith as Eliza Doolittle in "My Fair Lady" at Ephrata Performing Arts Center in this 2019 file photo. 

As Lancaster County continues to grapple with the coronavirus, area theaters have been forced to make difficult decisions.

Ephrata Performing Arts Center is no different. The community theater announced Friday it will postpone its 2020 season until 2021. While the theater is unable to confirm the 2021 schedule at this time, artistic director Edward R. Fernandez plans to move many of the mainstage shows planned for 2020 to the 2021 season, according to a press release.

Shows originally planned for the 2020 season include "The Boys in the Band," "Hedda Gabler," "Damn Yankees," and "Matilda." 

Current subscribers and ticket holders can move their tickets automatically to the 2021 season. If ticket holders are unable to attend in 2021, the theater asks they consider donating the value of their tickets to the theater as a tax-deductible contribution. Additional details are available by contacting the theater's box office at 717-733-7966 or by email at

It hasn't been an easy year for the performing arts center. During its closure, the theater experienced a water leak, damaging its shop area, green room, rehearsal room, prop room and conference room. 

Nevertheless, the performances - albeit virtual - continue. In June, the theater hosted a virtual show, "that asked actors to revisit past roles. The theater plans to share details about virtual and small-scale programs for the fall and holiday season soon," according to the press release. 

The theater noted that its decisions came after reviewing local, state and federal guidelines and recommendations.

"EPAC recognizes that the Lancaster performing arts community continues to navigate both the impact of COVID-19 and the recent calls to action for inclusion in our community," the press release reads. "EPAC continues to be committed to both the health and safety of our patrons, as well as taking tangible steps to address inequities and diversify our offerings in the future.

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