The BRIC Jazz Fest took place earlier this month… online, as you might expect in the current situation. Since last March, live events with in-person attendance pretty much disappeared from all corners of the globe, being replaced by the same events’ online counterparts – or simply postponed by a year. Or two.
The time of scarcity is, in turn, coming to an end. The public health measures, combined with vaccinations, is starting to take effect, with an increasing variety of pre-pandemic entertainment options returning in the coming weeks.
To be honest, the more than a year of lockdowns, restrictions, mandates, and such are starting to take its toll, especially now that spring is upon us. Of course, playing at Spin casino instead of a crowded Resorts World is clearly an improvement for many – its game variety beats anything a brick-and-mortar resort can offer.
Not to mention the fact that it’s way more accessible: you don’t have to drive to the Spin casino, you can simply pick up your phone, connect, and play the game that you like. Still, after a year of lockdowns, having a cold one in a beer garden or shouting your lungs out at a concert feels like the best thing you can do.
The lack of live events is pressing for the public – and even more so for the people behind these events. An online stream may be a worthy alternative in these trying times but it doesn’t compare to one with a live audience in front of a stage with a band.
To discover safe ways of reopening the world to live events, scientists around the world have been experimenting with various settings – the first attempts were made as early as last summer in Germany, with elaborate measures such as digital location tracking devices and fluorescent hand sanitizers, while the latest was a major event held in Barcelona, Spain, with 5,000 audience members at the end of March. And the results are encouraging to say the least.
Light at the end of the tunnel
“Festivals for Safe Culture” is an initiative formed by a group of Spanish music promoters, with the goal of discovering a way to bring live music back on the menu in a safe and responsible way. Late this March, the group organized a large rock concert – with the sole act being Love of Lesbian, a local indie rock band with more than two decades of experience behind them, and a crowd of 5,000 volunteers.
The concert took place on March 27 at Palau Sant Jordi in Barcelona. All the attendees were tested for COVID beforehand, and they were required to wear face masks during the event – but social distancing was not required.
Out of the almost 5,000 participants who agreed to their results to be followed up, only six tested positive 14 days after the event, and only two of them were certain to have been caught the virus at the concert. The organizers consider the experiment a huge success and the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel for live events.