Austria has cancelled its famous Vienna Opera Ball for the second year running over the coronavirus pandemic, the government said Wednesday.
Keeping the February 24, 2022 date would have sent “the wrong signal” as the country is only to start emerging from a partial lockdown this Sunday, state secretary for culture Andrea Mayer said.
“The Opera Ball is typically the kind of event at which social distancing is impossible,” she told the Austrian news agency APA.
The ball, a major event in Austria’s cultural calendar attended by the country’s political and economic elites as well as foreign celebrities, was also cancelled last year over the Covid-19 pandemic.
Before that, it was called off during the 1991 Gulf War.
The event usually attracts thousands of guests, with ordinary tickets costing 315 euros ($350) and circle boxes available for 23,600 euros ($26,700), according to the Vienna Opera’s website. — Agence France-Presse