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Bike-In concerts: The next wheely good idea?

In the space of just a few weeks, drive-in concerts have – along with the likes of live streams, virtual experiences and socially distanced shows – become an important part of live music’s ‘new normal’, with fans in Germany, the US, Lithuania, the Netherlands and elsewhere watching shows through their car windscreens and Live Nation CEO Michael Rapino identifying drive-ins as being key to getting the business restarted.

However, drive-in concerts aren’t without their detractors, with critics having pointed to the environmental impact of hundreds of cars sitting stationary with their engines running, as well as the perceived lack of immersion compared to a ‘real’ live show.

Now, Fulvio De Rosa, head manager of Milan-based promoter Shining Production, believes he has the answer:  Bike-In, a new event concept that would instead see concertgoers bring their bicycles to a live show, allowing fans to experience a traditional open-air concert from the comfort of their saddles.

De Rosa, who is in the process of raising funding for the idea, highlights Bike-In’s advantages compared to a drive-in show: “There’s been a lot of talk in these last few days about the return of ‘drive-in’ movies, but we prefer thinking of something that, above all, should be eco-friendly and sharable. This is how Bike-In was born.”

Whereas drive-in concerts see fans, many of whom have been in “lockdown for a long time”, once again isolated in their vehicles, and need a large paved area such as a car park, Bike-In allows fans to enjoy the music “while breathing fresh air”, and is adaptable to any space, including parks and other green spaces, he continues.

The Bike-In concept is designed to be “eco-friendly and sharable”

According to a presentation document, events using Bike-In would allow fans to choose their own spot in the ‘venue’, from three options: a single spot for one person and one bicycle, a family or couples spot, for multiple people and bikes, and a ‘premium spot’ on a raised platform that includes services such as food and beverage. Each spot has its own bike rack, and is located at a safe distance from others to ensure social distancing.

The document also suggests Bike-In could be used for livestreamed shows, with those who purchase the format benefitting from a F&B delivery service to fans watching from home.

Speaking to Italian media, Laura Ciraudo, communications manager for Shining Production and sister businesses Live Music Club and Fresh Agency, says Bike-In has already received concrete interest from venues in Lombardy and Turin, as well as more general enquiries from all over Italy.

The Italian government announced on Monday that concerts, sans F&B and with strict capacity limits and social-distancing measures, may once again be held from 15 June.


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