Dr Anthony Fauci, the United States’ Chief Medical Advisor, says he expects full-capacity live shows to return to the United States this autumn.
No traditional gigs have taken place in the country since late March 2020, when the first wave of the coronavirus hit.
Speaking at a conference for the Association of Performing Arts Professionals on Saturday (January 9), Fauci says he believes venues and theatres will reopen “some time in the fall of 2021,” with the success of this plan hinging on the country’s vaccine rollout.
Revealing that between 70% and 85% of the US population would need to vaccinated for venues to re-open, Fauci said (via the New York Times): “If everything goes right, this is will occur some time in the fall of 2021, so that by the time we get to the early to mid-fall, you can have people feeling safe performing on stage, as well as people in the audience.”
He added: “I think you can then start getting back to almost full capacity of seating,” before referencing tests done in Germany recently, where a study into the transmission of coronavirus at indoor concerts concluded the environment poses a “low to very low” risk to attendees of contracting the disease.
“What the performing arts needs to do is to do a little bit more of what the Germans are doing,” Fauci said, before telling music fans: “We’ll be back in the theatres – performers will be performing, audiences will be enjoying it. It will happen.”
Last month, the president of Live Nation, Joe Berchtold, said that he felt “very good” about the prospect of traditional live music returning this summer, while Barcelona festival Primavera Sound hailed a successful trial to study the idea of holding gigs without social distancing.
It was also recently revealed that legendary London venue The 100 Club will pilot a new ventilation system in January that aims to wipe out 99.99 per cent of dangerous airborne pathogens, such as the coronavirus, within buildings.
Developed by a British team of engineers, scientists, medical experts and entrepreneurs, the PRS (Pathogen Reduction System) has been designed to fit into a building’s existing ventilation system.