Denmark have started holding drive-in gigs

Could this be the future of live music?

Denmark trialled a potential solution to the coronavirus pandemic’s effects on live performances this week, with musician Mads Langer performing a sold-out ‘drive-in’ gig.

Announced with six days’ notice, the gig sold out almost instantly. 500 tickets were sold for the show, which took place on the outskirts of Aarhus. The following day, the stage became a drive-in cinema.

It comes shortly after Spain announced plans to phase in live music events in May as part of their lockdown exit plan.

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The Danish gig saw audio from the show being transmitted to the cars via FM radio, while the following day the site was repurposed as a drive in cinema to screen Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker.

“I’ve played many concerts in my life, but this is really a first,” Langer said from the stage, according to a report by Forbes. At one point he also invited a fan to dance with him onstage.

Aarhus drive in cinema
CREDIT: Julien Hekimian/Getty Images

It represents one possible solution to the future of live performances after lockdown.

As NME reported yesterday, a number of UK venue owners have been voicing concerns about when and how they will be able to re-open.

The immediate future of live music in the UK remains uncertain. With the majority of the summer’s shows and festivals cancelled or postponed, it was said last week that social restrictions could be kept in place in the UK for the rest of the year. Professor Chris Whitty, Chief Medical Adviser to the UK Government, told the public it was “wholly unrealistic” to expect life to return to normal soon.

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In the US, the mayors of L.A. and New York suggested that public concerts won’t be able to return until 2021, with a poll finding that most gig-goers would rather wait until a vaccine is found until attending shows again.

Many countries in Europe and Scandinavia have also banned mass gatherings until September, although Sweden had controversially allowed for gigs with up to a capacity of 40 people to take place with appropriate social distancing measures in place.

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