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Germany won’t Return to Live, says government

Germany’s federal and state governments have dashed hopes of the country returning to live any time soon after announcing that major events which do not adhere to hygiene regulations will be banned at least until the end of this year.

Germany’s chancellor, Angela Merkel, previously announced in June that major events in the country would be banned until the start of November unless organisers can prove that social distancing measures and hygiene protocol can be met.

The extension of the ban is part of a series of measures to help contain the spread of the virus in Germany, which include a minimum fine of €50 for those caught without a mask.

Chancellor Angela Merkel says: “We want to keep our health system strong in the pandemic, because this benefits everyone, but also the economy and public life.”

Earlier this week, the Live Nation GSA-promoted concert Return to Live – slated to be the biggest show in the country since March – was postponed indefinitely due to increasing infections.

“We want to keep our health system strong in the pandemic, because this benefits everyone, but also the economy and public”

The concert was due to take place on 4 September, inviting up to 12,000 to watch artists including Bryan Adams, Sarah Connor and Rea Garvey at the all-seated Merkur Spiel Arena in Dusseldorf.

Music industry conference and showcase festival Reeperbahn is among those still slated to take place in Germany between August and November, set for 16 to 19 September in Hamburg.

According to Hamburg government spokesperson Enno Isermann Reeperbahn “should take place under the applicable corona regulations”

While Germany may not be able to return to live yet, preparations for next year look promising. Just a few days ago the German federal government committed €80 million to organisers of music concerts and festivals from its €1bn Restart Culture programme.

The 12-month Neustart Kultur (‘Restart Culture’) stimulus package includes a total of €150m earmarked for music, with this initial €80m dedicated to events from October 2020 to the end of August 2021.

This news followed reports that Germany is likely to extend its coronavirus furlough scheme to 24 months – a proposal that has the backing of the chancellor, Angela Merkel.

 


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Reeperbahn selects Denmark as 2020 focus nation

Reeperbahn Festival 2019 wrapped up on Sunday (23 September) following four days of panel discussions, keynote interviews, industry announcements, award ceremonies and live performances.

Organisers of the Hamburg-based conference and festival announced Denmark as next year’s focus nation shortly after the close of the 2019 festival, which drew more than 50,000 visitors, including 5,900 music industry professionals.

A “record” number of Danish bands will be present at Reeperbahn 2020, which will take place from 16 to 19 September. Denmark-focused networking events, panels and pre-events will also take place.

17 bands from 2019 focus country Australia performed at Reeperbahn this year, with Glenn Dickie of Australian music export office Sounds Australia commenting that he “couldn’t be happier with how our year as focus country has played out.”

“Our artists and managers are excited by all of the business opportunities that have been presented to them and we are excited to continue this momentum in presenting great Australian music to the German market,” says Dickie.

A “record” number of Danish bands will be present at Reeperbahn 2020

A host of industry announcements were unveiled at this year’s Reeperbahn, including the future of gender equality campaign Keychange, the creation of a mentorship scheme for European music managers and the launch of Pitchfork Music Festival in Berlin.

Ukrainian rapper alyona alyona was this year’s winner of international talent competition Anchor, with a jury comprised of Tony Visconti, Bob Rock, Peaches and Kate Nash, among others.

At the International Music Journalism Awards, IQ’s news editor Jon Chapple took home the gong for best music business journalist of the year, with Juliane Liebert of Radioeins winning best German music journalist of the year and Vivian Goldman receiving the English equivalent award.

German rock festival Open Flair (20,000-cap.) won the best festival award and multi-genre festival Haldern Pop (7,000-cap.) was received the prize for best booking.

Tickets for Reeperbahn 2020 are available here. Under early bird rates, applicable until December 31, conference tickets are priced at €138 and a four-day festival pass is €99.

 


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