This summer, live music has made a comeback amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. Slowing vaccination rates and arising variants, however, has one of the biggest concert promoters in the country taking precautionary steps to keep the music going. AEG, the second largest concert promoter in the US behind Live Nation, has announced that they will be requiring proof of vaccination for all of its US venues starting this fall.
Jay Marciano, COO of AEG and chairman-CEO of AEG Presents, shared in a statement on Thursday that AEG’s position as a market leader led them to the conclusion that they needed to “take a real stand on vaccination status.”
The recent Delta variant progression, coupled with vaccine hesitancy, has stalled the pandemic recovery process and tempered optimism across the US. Marciano hopes that this preventative measure will ultimately be the appropriate step in keeping concerts and festivals around and safe for everyone involved.
“We also are aware that there might be some initial pushback, but I’m confident and hopeful that, at the end of the day, we will be on the right side of history and doing what’s best for artists, fans, and live event workers.”
AEG, owner and/or operator of major music festivals Coachella, Stagecoach and Electric Forest, is sending a message to American citizens with its new policy. Starting October 1st, if concert goers cannot provide proof of vaccination upon entrance, they will be barred from the event. Until that date, fans will be granted entry with either proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test within 72 hours.
AEG’s new policy stands in contrast to Live Nation, who announced on August 6th that they will allowing artists to determine vaccine requirements at US shows.
This statement further adds to a busy week for COVID-19 related music announcements. On August 10th, Stevie Nicks announced that she will be canceling her remaining performances this year due to COVID-19. The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, a popular annual event that Nicks was scheduled to perform at, was also canceled earlier this week.