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IS COACHELLA NEXT?

As Coronavirus fears become more and more of a factor on the landscape, are people starting to talk about creative ways to approach the big festivals and redeem some of the gigantic investments that have already been made in them? Is there a possibility, for example, of a big fest like Coachella (with headliners Rage Against the Machine, Frank Ocean and Travis Scott) becoming a worldwide pay-per-view-only event that would enable fans to see the show and give sponsors a sizable look?

The elderly population of the Coachella Valley and neighboring communities is certainly pushing back against an influx of 70k or so bodies in the midst of a pandemic. 

What about other big festivals, such as Lollapalooza, Glastonbury, Rock in Rio, Rock am Ring and Rock im Park?

Whoever goes there first with a PPV-only format may reap the greatest reward, as it’s unknown how many such digital events consumers would support. Festivals, for many attendees, are about romping about with friends under the influence of various substances, not just watching performances.

It goes without saying that a citywide party like the now-cancelled South By Southwest is a wholly different matter, as the acts aren’t what draw the crowds—it’s more of a spring break with bands (and some daytime activities). The decision by local authorities to shut the gathering down provided the force majeure that would make contractual obligations null and void.

 

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