What a music event looks like in a 1,5-meter society
Human life and daily functioning have changed in many aspects due to the safety measures we are forced to take in response to the pandemic. Music is just as affected.
Countries worldwide do their best to adjust to the new reality of life with social distancing. These preventive measures have made mass gatherings impossible, as WHO suggests people keep a distance at 1.5 meters at least.
These new requirements have closed restaurants, bars, hotels, cinemas, theaters, museums, galleries, and music venues. A massive number of music events, concerts, and music festivals have been either completely canceled or postponed until things get back to normal. However, we still don't know when that is going to be, nor what the new "normal" will even be. This makes it difficult to imagine the outcome and the future for such huge industries.
Music fans worldwide are undoubtedly and understandably disheartened, as music events and concerts have always played a significant role in people's social lives. People have often used these events to meet people from all over the world and celebrate the art and power of music. But the truth is, the artists and musical institutions are feeling the consequences far more drastically. The shutdown is estimated to cost the industry more than $10bn in sponsorships, with longer delays being even more devastating.
This goes to show that music events and the music itself are more than just entertainment, and it is about time that humanity comes up with a creative solution to save the essential aspects of people's lives.
The first step towards finding a safe alternative for a live concert is taking the show online. Covid-19 changed the way people listen to music. As the World Economic Forum reports, in China, Tencent Music Entertainment (TME) reported changes to listening behavior during the pandemic. More consumers use home applications on TVs and smart devices, increasing on-demand music video streams. But, as lockdown lifts in many parts of the world, people crave live music more than ever. For that matter, the next best things are drive-in concerts.
While it might not be the perfect solution regarding some music genres, such as EDM, which requires a specific atmosphere that makes people dance, it is still better than no event whatsoever.
Drive-in concerts are a pretty decent way to reimagine the live music experience during social distancing, allowing music fans to enjoy shows from their tailgating zone. Safety should be everyone's top priority; thus, drive-in concerts are designed to maximize social distancing. At some venues, visitors can bring their food and beverages, and some may even guarantee high health and safety standards while offering their menus. Music events in a 1.5-meter society will require wearing masks for a long time, as well as frequent use of hand sanitizers.
We have yet to see whether the drive-in concerts are the future of live events. However, it is a creative solution until we get a vaccine or medicine for the coronavirus, and the traditional concert experience returns.