Parkway Drive

Health Expert Doesn’t See Live Concerts, Etc. Returning Until Fall 2021


The toll that the shutdown initiated to combat the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has had on the live music industry in just several weeks has already been catastrophic. Unfortunately though, the touring business may remain in purgatory for much longer than anyone was hoping.

While some artists have been rescheduling for mid to late summer, other major festivals and events have been pushed back to fall or next year just to be on the safe side. Recently metal booking agent Daniel DeFonce of Continental Touring expressed his concerns that touring won’t likely be a possibility again until 2021.

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Now, in a newly published piece over at The New York Times about restarting the American economy, it seems that even that estimate could be conservative at best. Zeke Emanuel, vice provost for global initiatives and director of the Healthcare Transformation Institute at the University of Pennsylvania; host of a new podcast about coronavirus, ‘Making the Call‘; and author of the forthcoming book ‘Which Country Has the World’s Best Health Care?‘, was one of the panelists to take part in that chat.

Speaking on what he sees as the most likely scenario for things to begin to approach the normalcy we once enjoyed, he commented:

“…Restarting the economy has to be done in stages, and it does have to start with more physical distancing at a work site that allows people who are at lower risk to come back. Certain kinds of construction, or manufacturing or offices, in which you can maintain six-foot distances are more reasonable to start sooner. Larger gatherings — conferences, concerts, sporting events — when people say they’re going to reschedule this conference or graduation event for October 2020, I have no idea how they think that’s a plausible possibility. I think those things will be the last to return. Realistically we’re talking fall 2021 at the earliest.

Restaurants where you can space tables out, maybe sooner. In Hong Kong, Singapore and other places, we’re seeing resurgences when they open up and allow more activity. It’s going to be this roller coaster, up and down. The question is: When it goes up, can we do better testing and contact tracing so that we can focus on particular people and isolate them and not have to reimpose shelter-in-place for everyone as we did before?”

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