Universal Music Group Launching Virtual Reality Concerts

Universal Music Group (UMG) have partnered with iHeartRadio to bring music concerts into a virtual reality for 2016.

Virtual reality is fast becoming a new popular medium for visceral video experiences and especially video games, which have so far been the main focus for the development of virtual reality headsets. However as of yet no-one has created an experience based around music, at least not until this year.

At the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) UMG announced a partnership with iHeartMedia to bring virtual reality music experiences in a Concert Series. Reportedly four UMG artists will have a live concert shot in full to be used in iHeartRadio’s VR Concert Series in Los Angeles later this year.

UMG’s Chairman and CEO, Lucian Grainge said: “At UMG, we are focused on harnessing cutting-edge technology to pioneer new creative and commercial opportunities for artists, labels and fans. By combining iHeartMedia’s music events and hundreds of millions of listeners with the ability of our artists to forge powerfully emotional connections with their fans, we are ideally positioned to use VR technology to create authentic experiences that benefit our artists, consumers and marketing partners.”

iHeartMedia’s Chairman and CEO, Bob Pittman said in a press release: “Our greatest strength at iHeartmedia is that we curate for our listeners – in this case, working with UMG to create a completely new entertainment experience using state-of-the-art VR technology and now, as advertisers seek to tie their brands and products to music and artists in innovative ways, we can use our industry-leading reach and best-of-breed music events to unlock the combined power of music and VR as a revolutionary marketing tool. We’re excited to work with UMG in a partnership unlike any in the music and entertainment industry.”

As well as the four full shows planned UMG are also promising to bring six one-off virtual reality experiences to various iHeartRadio events throughout the year. The first VR experience is expected at the iHeartRadio Music Awards, hosted on the 3rd April, 2016.

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