Concert organizers complain about a lack of political guidelines

“I’m not euphoric at all”
Discussion about major concerts – organizers complain about a lack of prospects

Inconsistent regulations for concert operations, a lack of guidelines for major events: many organizers are angry or resigned. The consequences will be felt until next year.

The cultural scene is picking up speed again; you can tell museum people and theater people the joy of finally being able to receive visitors again. It looks completely different these days with concert organizers. There are some dates for live performances in the next few weeks. Most, however, are designed for a maximum of 3,000 to 4,500 spectators, such as the beach chair concerts in the Hockeypark in Mönchengladbach or the concerts in front of your door at the arena in Oberhausen. It is said that major events cannot be planned at the moment.

Michael Hilgers, managing director of the Sparkassenpark in Mönchengladbach, organizes concerts all over Germany. He’s sitting on the train and is upset. “In Regensburg, only 500 people are allowed on the square because supposedly arrival and departure cannot be regulated,” he says. “I wonder why 14,000 people are allowed to attend a soccer game in the same federal state.” In Rhineland-Palatinate, 250 people are allowed; , Distribution of seats according to checkerboard pattern, test) Make a program for more than 1000 fans. “It’s so chaotic what the individual federal states are doing.” Hardly anyone would like to organize performances under these conditions, because you simply cannot say whether they will actually take place. In fact, when asked whether he had time to talk about the prospects in concert business, a large organizer replied that such an interview did not make sense.

Berni Lewkowicz from the NRW Concert Team agrees: “No, I’m not at all euphoric.” It is currently completely unclear whether and what is possible in terms of concert technology. He is now hoping for autumn. From October everything should be possible again if you control the 3G, he says: recovered, vaccinated or tested. Michael Hilgers, however, misses clear announcements on this point as well: “Why not just get started again from September? How many must be vaccinated so that big events can take place again? Why don’t you determine the percentage of people who have been vaccinated, and when that is reached, things start again? ”To be on the safe side, he is not planning any major events before June 2022.

The NRW Ministry of Culture refers to the resolution of the Prime Minister’s Conference last week, according to which the heads of the state and senate chancelleries are asked to form a working group. This should decide when and how large concerts with more than 10,000 visitors can take place. In addition, the working group should “work out a coordinated proposal for a uniform approach to major events”. That sounds good and concrete. When the time comes remains unclear.

Now, looking at the concert calendar, you could say that redemption will definitely come in 2022. There has seldom been a year in which so many major concerts took place. Artists like Rammstein and Die Toten Hosen appear several times in the same city. A joke is already circulating about the “decision-making crisis”: “Unfortunately I can’t go to the Beatles concert, I’m already at Led Zeppelin.” So rescue is near?

Sure, it’s great that – provided that the incidence numbers don’t rise again – so many concerts will take place. For two years there was almost nothing. The Christmas business will also be strong, predicts Hilgers, and concert tickets will certainly be given away a lot. However, you cannibalize yourself. “People can’t go to 200 concerts.” He estimates that the great artists will have their audiences. However, he is worried about the Mittelbau and the smaller events. “Anything that is designed for less than 3000 people will run into big problems,” says Hilgers.

Because catch-up dates from 2020 were sometimes rescheduled three times, new dates currently have to be “moved from left to right,” says Lewkowicz. Result: “For 2022 and 2023 there are no more open-air dates in stadiums. Halls will also be fully booked from autumn 2022. ”He’s also worried about the purchasing power and the appetite of the public: Will they like to move around in large crowds again or is they afraid of a residual risk?

So there is great irritation in the industry, whose events have a long lead time. What she needs is planning security.


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