Coachella kicks off high-stakes concert season, still uncertain

Berkeley Reinhold, a lawyer who represents artists and major concert organizers, said insurance covering artists unable to perform due to...


Berkeley Reinhold, a lawyer who represents artists and major concert organizers, said insurance covering artists unable to perform due to Covid-19 was “not commercially viable” for most acts , and that the pandemic has added new layers of negotiation over how costs and risks are distributed between artists and the promoters who book them.

Coachella, which attracts up to 125,000 attendees daily, announced in February that it would not require participants to wear masks, take tests or be vaccinated. It has quietly become the norm, even after several festivals last year, such as Lollapalooza in Chicago, pointed to policies requiring proof of vaccination, or a negative test, as a key part of their safety rules. Representatives for Goldenvoice, which presents Coachella in conjunction with AEG, a major promoter and venue owner, declined to comment.

Even among musicians, the pressure to stay on the road no matter what can be intense. Arthur Rizk, the guitarist of the metal band Eternal Championsaid an unwritten “don’t ask, don’t tell” rule has developed among touring musicians, urging them not to take coronavirus tests unless they feel sick.

Rizk said he rejects that view and added that Eternal Champion is scrupulously safe, with the members wearing masks even during their rehearsals. The pressure on testing, he said, was just another stressor in the touring world in 2022, when, after two years of postponements, nothing seems certain.

“We were offered some of the biggest gigs of our lives later this year, and I can’t be happy about that,” Rizk said. “I don’t know if anything is real at all. We’ve had shows postponed for almost three years now. »

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Newsrust - US Top News: Coachella kicks off high-stakes concert season, still uncertain
Coachella kicks off high-stakes concert season, still uncertain
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