The future of Stratford's iconic theatre festival hung in the balance last night after terrifying bomb threats were sent to local police. At around 6:45 PM on Monday, the opening night of the festival, police received an anonymous phone call claiming that explosives had been planted at festival theatres.
Festival officials were notified and Stratford's main theatres were immediately evacuated. Police swept the entire area for any trace of explosives and suspicious activity. The Stratford festival has since responded to the public, saying that the show will go on.
Today's performances will continue as scheduled. We have added new security measures to ensure the ongoing safety of our patrons and staff. Please arrive 30 minutes prior to the show to allow time for these new procedures. Thank you for your continued support
"Today's performances will continue as scheduled," Stratford Festival officials announced this morning, "We have added new security measures to ensure the ongoing safety of our patrons and staff. Please arrive 30 minutes prior to the show to allow time for these new procedures."
As for yesterday's abrupt evacuation, Stratford Festival reps said last night, "We will ensure all patrons with tickets for tonight's performances will be contacted regarding their tickets."
"The initial threat was to the Stratford Festival but our security invoked our policy for the situation," they explained, "This meant securing the Avon and Studio Theatres as well as a precaution."
Stratford Police have yet to reveal whether or not they actually found anything suspicious. But, they said early this morning that all theatre buildings have been turned over to the festival once again, and police have cleared from the area.
Glad everyone is safe in Stratford after the reported threat last night. The Stratford Festival is a cultural gem and we treasure it beyond words. I spoke with Mayor @danmathieson about the response and the investigation is ongoing.
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