“Live Performance Producers Are Giving Up on 2020,” New York Times says
Back in April, one expert estimated that concerts and other live events wouldn't return until fall 2021 from their current coronavirus pause. While we've already see a socially distanced Arkansas show and drive-in concerts and festivals, it seems a return to large, crowded events like full-scale festivals, arena shows, or even packed club shows are still a ways away. The New York Times, in an article posted on Sunday (5/24), agrees. Speaking to a variety of people working in the field, all concluded that 2020 is likely off the table for major live events.
Jay Marciano, chairman of AEG Presents, told the Times, "It doesn’t seem likely we are going to open in the fall."
AEG is, among other things, the parent company of Goldenvoice, which presents Coachella. The festival's 2020 edition is currently rescheduled for October, but it remains very much in question whether it will actually go on over the weekends of October 9-11 and October 16-19, as it's set to right now. Paul Tollett declined to comment to the Times about that for this article.
Live Nation president Joe Berchtold told the Times that the return of touring would depend on whether a vaccine became available, and how widespread testing is. "While we think that phenomenal strides are being made in both cases, given the lead time involved in planning major concert tours, and the uncertainties that exist today, we don’t expect a large volume of major tours in the fall," he said.
Live Nation previously said that drive-in concerts, reduced capacity shows, broadcasts from empty venues are all under consideration.
Anna D. Shapiro, artistic director of Chicago’s Steppenwolf Theater Company, seemed to sum it up, telling the Times, "I think 2020 is gone. I’ll be stunned if we’re back in the theater."
Read the whole article here.
Even when concerts do return, it's likely moshing and crowd surfing won't be allowed for a while.