Aussie promoters have created a world-first COVID safe music festival format
17.09.2020

Aussie promoters have created a world-first COVID safe music festival format

The format will be rolled out at the forthcoming Good Day Sunshine festival in WA.

Ever since COVID entered our lives and broke the hearts of music fans worldwide, the question about the future of festival has weighed heavily on our shoulders.

Offering a beacon of hope for Aussie festival-goers, WA promoters Macro Music are presenting a brand new COVID Safe music festival format to be rolled out in a world-first at the forthcoming Good Day Sunshine (5,000 capacity) festival in Busselton WA on October 31 this year, featuring performances from the likes of John Butler, Xavier Rudd, and Josh Pyke.

Developed by Macro Music CEO Ross Macpherson, the new ‘round format’ will see the event site split into four separate areas, each named after famous surf spots in the region (Cobblestones, Windmills, The Point and Injidup) with a revolving stage in the centre, aptly named ‘The Turntable Stage’.

As a ‘COVID Safe’ event, the reduced capacity of each area of just 1250 people decreases the risk of any virus spread, lowers the numbers for contact tracing in the event of an outbreak and allows the space needed for patrons to observe the current WA restrictions of two sqm per person.

Each area will operate as an individual event, with its own entry, exit and amenities, resulting in shorter wait times for bars, food outlets and loos, which is music to our ears to be honest. Large LED screens draping the stage will provide perfect vision at all times, while the static sound system means consistent, perfect sound quality across the whole event site.

Patrons will be allowed to select which area they want to be in to ensure they can attend with friends and family via a secure online booking system before arriving. Once they are inside the entry gate, they remain in that area for the duration of the event. Through ticketing partners, the festival would also have contact details for all ticket purchasers in case contact tracing is required post-show.

There will also be signage and super screen messaging throughout the day reminding patrons to physically distance, and patrons will be encouraged to bring picnic blankets and low back chairs to create their own social bubbles within the event site.

Led by a chief COVID-Safety officer, dedicated teams will also frequently top up hand sanitiser stations and clean any shared facilities including toilets, furniture and bar tops throughout the day with approved surface products.

Check out the video below.

Sounds and looks pretty good, right?

“We are excited to roll out this format for Good Day Sunshine. It will be great to have music events of a larger capacity rolling in Australia again,” says Ross Macpherson.

“We have been working with the local council, police, health and various other stakeholders to ensure the format complies with the current COVID guidelines for WA. All have been incredibly supportive of our ideas. We will be monitoring the situation, and we are in constant contact with the relevant stakeholders.

“Should the situation in WA change, we will work to whatever guidelines are needed. The health and safety of our patrons and the state of WA are our top priority. And of course, if a situation arises that prevents us from going ahead, we will be prepared to refund tickets.”

The festival, Good Day Sunshine, will be a great festival to trial this format in, gifting music-lovers an experience they’ve so dearly missed with performances from join John Butler, Xavier Rudd, Josh Pyke, Vikki Thorn, Kyle Lionhart, Dulcie and Moon & Honey. Alongside the joy for music fans, the festival will also stimulate the WA economy through employment and income opportunities for locals.

Hopefully, if it all goes ahead and to plan, we might be seeing this format pop up in other states across Australia, including Victoria.

“I would be flattered if this format was to be used by other events in Australia and across the world,” Macpherson adds.

“The sooner we can get large scale live events back up and running, the better for everyone. I am excited to see what innovation comes from this pandemic; it is a great opportunity for some creative thinking from the live music community.”

Alongside this festival, tropical North Queensland will host a COVID-safe country music festival with the Savannah Summer Series landing in Cairns and Mareeba from October 1-2 featuring Lee Kernaghan, Casey Barnes, The Buckleys, SaltbushSix, The Roadtrippers, The Ayres Rockettes and Camille Trail live on stage.

Day one of the event at Salt House in Cairns will have allocated table and chair seating as well as high chair seating arrangements and a standing area, while the second day at Mareeba Rodeo Grounds in Mareeba will have its mosh pit replaced with allocated table and chair seating, general admission pod allocation and grandstand reserved seating.

Good Day Sunshine will take place on October 31st, at Barnard Park on the Busselton Foreshore, tickets are about to sell out.

Visit gooddaysunshinefest.com for all the deets.