The once vibrant local arts community is still facing COVID-19 uncertainties and the committee members behind one region's most vital hubs want to open the curtains as soon as possible.
The majestic Milton Theatre is currently closed and has been a gig free vivid for many weeks.
President of the theatre committee, Rob Bevear said the arts community is sweating on the venue's reopening.
"We are getting lots of artists, agents, managers and all people in the industry calling us to take bookings," he said.
"However, we can't take bookings at this stage as we and the government don't know what is going to happen."
The theatre's management committee decided it won't take any more bookings until more COVID-19 recovery information, particularly arts-based, comes forth.
"We will not be taking any more new bookings until word from the authorities comes telling us it's okay to do so," he said.
Normally the popular venue is booked out six months in advance and they already had many bookings in the system before they went into lockdown.
They had to cancel or postpone some of the shows they had booked.
The first possible event is Katie Noonan's performance booked for July 11, while the Steve Kilby Conjola benefit concert is booked in for October 2.
Rob said it has been a frustrating time for the committee.
He agrees the theatre is an important part of the Milton community and the Shoalhaven region in general.
A vibrant and fully booked Milton Theatre helps support the local economy.
"Obviously we get a lot of locals here but I would say that 50 per cent or more of our audiences come from out of town," Rob said.
"We get a lot of people here from Sydney, Canberra, Wollongong and from down the coast," he said.
Rob added some people would rather come to Milton than go to a show in Sydney or Canberra.
"They come down and make a weekend of it," he said.
The theatre also does community hires which gives local groups the chance to perform at the historic venue.
Rob said the lack of bookings has cost the group money.
"It has [cost money] but not a huge amount because we are a volunteer committee and are lucky in that sense," he said.
"However, there are going to be costs like the upkeep of the theatre.
"We also won't be able to just open the doors - we are going to have to get in and do a full clean."
The committee has used the lockdown time to do some maintenance on this grand old building.
He said COVID-19 has been a frustrating time for the committee but added other sectors were worse off.
"It's mainly the artists, management and all the people in the industry that we feel sorry for," he said.
Rob, as he pointed to some of the posters of people who had previously been at the theatre, said some of the lesser-known performers lived a week to week kind of existence.
"We talked about donating to Support Art which is an organisation that aids people in the industry who have come on tough times. However, we have not done so yet and we are still looking into," he said.
Any spare funds the committee has normally get invested back into the venue's upkeep and equipment like lighting and speakers, which always need upgrades.
Rob has lived in the area since the late 1970s and is familiar with other members of the local arts community.
He heard many people in the arts community were experiencing 'pretty tough' times at the moment.
"They are all just itching to go," he said.
"Most of the people in the entertainment industry are generally pretty positive people and they look on the bright side.
"It's a bit tough for us now to have to say to them 'sorry we are not taking any bookings until we know what is going on'.
"Once we explain the reasons they get it but they are keen for us to start taking bookings."
The theatre, once the committee gets the all-clear, will be back up and running quickly.
They are sure to be swamped with interest and the committee's role would be to make sure the shows are suitable for the charming 212 seat venue.
"It will basically be first in best dressed," Rob said.
The venue, in normal times, averages one show a fortnight with Friday and Saturday the most popular days.
Rob is settling into his first 12 months as a committee president and his first role was the booking officer, which he did for five years.
About the venue
Milton Theatre has been an integral element of Milton life since 1871.
In 1911 Milton School of Arts used the building for flicks and magic lantern shows.
From 1929, moving picture shows were popular, along with dancing and other functions.
1993 marked the end of usage as a movie theatre and after renovations were completed in 1997.
The building has become a mecca for performers who used it for recording, live shows and a presentation venue.