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No standing concerts in France until March 2021 – report

With coronavirus infections rising, the French government is set to dash any hopes of a return to non-socially distanced concerts before next summer

By IQ on 19 Oct 2020

Live Nation's Main Square festival in Arras was among those to be called off this summer

Live Nation's Main Square festival in Arras was among those to be called off this summer

image © Nicko Guihal/Main Square 2019

Amid a second wave of the coronavirus in Europe, French authorities are preparing to ban all standing concerts until 31 March 2021, according to local media.

It is an “open secret” that the government is preparing to outlaw all “horizontal concerts” (as opposed to vertical concerts – ie seated shows, where concertgoers’ seats are staggered vertically) until after the winter, when it is hoped a Covid-19 vaccine will be available, reports Les Jours.

The news would come as a particular blow to French festival businesses, which will be deep into preparations for their summer 2021 events (if not having started the festival build) by the time the proposed ban expires on 1 April.

It is hoped a Covid-19 vaccine will be available by April

According to France Festivals, more than 2,500 open-air events were cancelled because of coronavirus restrictions this summer.

Like many of its European neighbours, the French live business was showing signs of a return to normal in late summer, with health authorities even lifting the requirement for small events to socially distance patrons in August.

However, new restrictions were brought in earlier this month in light of rising coronavirus infections, and many cities, including Paris, are now subject to night-time curfews.


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