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The Curtains Rise On Live Music

There was no social distancing among the audience during DaBaby + Friends Concert at Orlando Amphitheater in Orlando, Florida.
There was no social distancing among the audience during DaBaby + Friends Concert at Orlando Amphitheater in Orlando, Florida.

Regular concertgoers who have been unable to get their live music fix since the pandemic began are eagerly anticipating the reopening of music venues nationwide. But the return of live music won’t be as simple as flipping on the lights.

According to the National Independent Venue Association, hundreds of venues across the country have shuttered in the last year. The passage of the $16 billion Save Our Stages Act in December promised relief, but so far no money has been doled out to the nearly 12,000 theaters and venues that applied.

Jem Aswad explained more in Variety:

The delay in relief funding has caused immeasurable problems for independent venues and theaters and has ironically aided large live-entertainment companies like Live Nation and AEG: Even with states opening back up, independent venues do not have the funding to secure talent or re-hire their staffs, festival promoters aren’t able to secure fields to hold their events, and the ecosystem around much of the live industry remains stalled — five and a half months after Save Our Stages was passed into law; PPP and the newly launched Restaurant Relief Fund were distributing millions of dollars within days.

How is the live music industry reopening after a year without revenue? And what will it mean for fans, musicians, and other workers?

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