Research finds over half of Americans wouldn’t feel OK at live events this year

A new survey shows hesitancy to return to normality as pandemic restrictions ease, revealing that 54% of Americans won’t feel ready to attend a live event like a concert until fall 2021 at least.

In the US, as the effect of the coronavirus pandemic lessens, thoughts are turning to the return to “normality.” But a recent survey has revealed which activities Americans are looking forward to returning to, and those that they’re less comfortable with – and over half said they’d feel uneasy attending a live event.

1,664 US adults were asked by HealthCareInsider to choose when they’d feel secure resuming activities such as taking public transport, hugging a loved one and returning to the workplace. Whilst those who took part were most comfortable travelling in a car (53%) and resuming outdoor activities (50%), being in closer quarters with more people had a less enthusiastic response.

Image Credit: HealthCareInsider

Of those surveyed, 54% of respondents said they wouldn’t be comfortable going to a live event before autumn 2021. 14% chose fall, 10% winter, and the largest group of 29% said they wouldn’t be ready until 2022 or later. And 8% said they’d “never” be comfortable attending a live event.

What does that mean for the return of live music? Perhaps the picture isn’t so bleak. As society opens up more and more, some of that trepidation may fade and those surveyed could well feel differently about being in a crowd. The survey also didn’t take into account how measures like a reduced capacity gig might affect an initially wary response, or if being vaccinated would change minds.

There’s certainly been an appetite for live music reported elsewhere. Back in March a Live Nation Entertainment survey found that 95% of music fans said they’d be likely to attend a gig once restrictions were lifted, with 83% holding onto concert tickets and 63% carrying over their cancelled festival tickets. In the UK, Live Nation sold 170,000 tickets for summer festivals in just three days.

I write about music for RouteNote, sharing fun stuff, news, and tips and tricks for musicians and producers. Also a saxophonist and hater of marmalade.

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