It goes without saying that the last year has been one like no other. Indeed, the global crisis has wreaked havoc on lives and industries. Especially the entertainment industry.
Concert and festival cancellations were colossal, with the sector sitting at an abrupt standstill.
But it seems like there may be light at the end of the tumultuous tunnel.
Full story below…
During a conference call with investors, Live Nation Entertainment CEO Michael Rapino encouraged the masses to brace for a summer comeback for live performances.
Touting the positive impact of coronavirus vaccines and the increasing rate of vaccinations, Rapino said:
“Given the massive social and economic toll that the lockdown has had on the public, we believe there will be strong momentum to reopen society swiftly as soon as vaccines are readily available.”
He went on to cite encouraging developments in the UK this week.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson unveiled a detailed plan outlining key dates for the return to normality; a date that resonated with many is June 21, for it marks the date outdoor events can resume at 100% capacity.
As a result, tickets for Live Nation’s Reading & Leeds + Creamfields festivals (both of which take place in August) went on sale and sold in record time. All 170,000 tickets.
Rapino applauded the development and added that both the UK and Australia have a “reasonable module model” in place. One that has overlapping benefits to the reopening of the US market.
“Every day we seem to have a new state or country talking about when they’ll open up, so we’re feeling more optimistic than we were a month ago. Lots of artists are calling, looking at how we start up in July, August, September. So for right now, we still believe we’ll have enough open in the U.K., Australia, Canada and the U.S. to keep what we have on the books in amphitheaters booked for now. We might have certain states that might not be ready, but we have enough states and enough artists willing to play the open slots if we get to that level in the right markets.
So as long as these states open up to the right capacities. we can start in midsummer and in the southern U.S. we can go all the way into November.”
It was stressed that the fact there isn’t a universal reopening plan in the US means it may not be 100% capacity from the get-go:
“[We] think we’re better off waiting for a high bar capacity moment in most of the states to ramp up and talk to the artists about getting paid properly,” said Rapino, adding that the prospect of a 75%-plus capacity re-opening in the largest U.S. markets was “within sight.”