Scientists Have Tested Non-Socially Distanced Concerts, And The Results Are Good

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Back in December, one of Spain’s premiere music festivals, Primavera Sound, linked up with local medical offices to conduct an experiment of live music without social distancing. The results are in, and they are better than expected.

While attending Barcelona’s Sala Apolo venue, concert goers were to be studied to see how these conditions affected COVID-19 transmission. Participants were invited from Primavera’s extensive database of fans. Once the selected group were all confirmed to have tested negative (rapidly before the show), they were allowed to attend. During this evening of live music, 500 attendees were allowed to stand, dance, drink, and mingle with other fans—all of which were activities previously deemed unsafe by many.

The only catch, in addition to being properly tested before the event, is that attendees had to wear provided N95 cloth masks. While this still may be an unattractive requirement for some, we think it’s clearly a sacrifice willing to be made.

The results? All attendees were tested a week after the event took place and not a single person tested positive for COVID-19. This tells us that preemptive rapid-testing, with the use of masks, provide a viable environment for live music, without all the social-distancing measures.

Is this a perfect environment? Maybe not. But we have to remember that we are still in the heat of this pandemic. The data reported from the New York Times shows that the United States reported well over a million new cases of COVID-19 just last week. With a vaccine in deployment, there is a light at the end of the tunnel, but nobody is 100% certain how and when live music will return. Primavera Sound’s study has shown us that if we are willing to get tested and keep a mask on, we could very well safely enjoy live music with a solid serving of normalcy.

Read Primavera’s full statement on the results of their study here.