Strictly Come Dancing face masks explained: Why the audience wears clear masks!

For viewers of Strictly Come Dancing there’s some noticeable changes this year, but the face masks in the audience have raised some questions.

The BBC show have taken precautions this year which allow it to go ahead following string government guidelines. Not only are the dancers and contestants in social bubbles with constant testing, but judges are socially distanced and masks are compulsory for the live audience.

The Strictly ticket site states: “We’ll be able to seat family groups of four people from the same household/ social bubble at cabaret tables and in balcony seating.”

BBC Newsround also reports that all audience members will be required to wear a face mask.

WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01 on 17/10/2020 – Programme Name: Strictly Come Dancing – TX: 17/10/2020 – Episode: Launch show (No. n/a) – Picture Shows: Claudia Winkleman, Tess Daly – (C) BBC – Photographer: Guy Levy

Why does the Strictly Come Dancing audience need to wear face masks?

Some viewers are confused as to why the audience needs them if all groups are from the same household and socially distanced.

One fan tweeted: “Wait @bbcstrictly is following guidelines but why are audience wearing masks but not judges of presenters? Surely audience could remove them once sat down and distanced?”

 

However, it’s likely that the face masks are an extra precaution in case social distancing at all times between tables is not possible. Whereas judges are seated at least two metres apart at all times, according to Radio Times.

Programme Name: Strictly Come Dancing – TX: 24/10/2020 – Episode: Live show 1 (No. 1) – Picture Shows: Craig Revel Horwood, Shirley Ballas, Motsi Mabuse – (C) BBC – Photographer: Guy Levy

Why the Strictly audience wears clear masks now

In recent episodes however, the audience have been sporting clear face masks instead of the black ones. Clear masks are used to benefit those who are hard of hearing and rely on lip reading to communicate.

The clear face masks allow viewers to see the audience’s expressions and were introduced a week after the show faced criticism about the previous black masks. Critics dubbed the black masks “creepy” and a “constant reminder”.

The makers of the mask, Clear Mask, tweeted: “What an awesome way to see the audience’s excited faces as the contestants showed off their dance moves.”

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