A music festival in Busselton, Western Australia, is trialling a new COVID-19 safe operating system next month with its new 5000-capacity Good Day Sunshine festival. Set to take place on October 31st, the festival will separate the event site into four distinct locations with their own entries and exits surrounding a single, rotating stage. Performers will play in the round, as to make sure each event area has the same vantage point, while each separate area will be treated as its own 1250-capacity sealed-off event space, with no overlap of staff or patrons. Patrons will be encouraged to create their own “social bubbles” within the separated areas. This means that, in theory, there is room for social distancing to take place, and that in the event of a COVID outbreak, only 1250 patrons plus staff will have to be contact traced, as opposed to 5000.
“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,” said festival owner Ross Macpherson in a statement. “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 … 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.”
“I would be flattered if this format was to be used by other events in Australia and across the world. 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.”
Australia currently has around 1,000 active coronavirus cases, although these cases are largely concentrated on the east coast; Western Australia, where Good Day Sunshine is set to take place, currently has four active cases. Watch a video explaining the layout of Good Day Sunshine above.