The Coronavirus has put a lot in our world on hold, including most forms of public entertainment and events. Fairs, carnivals, festivals, and concerts have been cancelled due to the pandemic. Planned tours and events have had to refund pre-ordered tickets and reschedule their activities to later dates. Physical barriers aren’t stopping everyone, though. For many creatives, a pandemic doesn’t mean fun has to be put on hold.
Performers and artists are working around the Coronavirus and finding new, unique ways to provide their viewers and fans with entertainment. Alt-rock band Wallows is currently performing for their “Virtual World Tour,” a weekly livestream performing different setlists each night. Each live stream is at a different time of day, each being at a convenient time for a certain regional time zone, so everyone around the world is able to join in on the online tour. Admission to each livestream costs $15.
Another example is the music festival Square Garden, which entailed a gathering on open-world video game Minecraft with a setlist of multiple big-name alternative artists. Hosted on April 24 by new experimental music duo 100 Gecs, hundreds of people were able to have fun alongside their favorite musicians on Minecraft, or from the official livestream of the event. All proceeds from this virtual festival went to the charity Feeding America.
Square Garden was organized by Open Pit, a collection of volunteers who run and organize virtual events. This volunteer-run company has executed many of these online gatherings, including another that was just a few days prior to the Square Garden. On April 11, music festival Nether Meant was also hosted in Minecraft, with all proceeds from ticket prices going to the charity Good360, which resulted in over $8,000.
In today’s day and age, physical barriers are immaterial — not being able to see each other in-person means nothing. During turbulent, unpredictable times like these, it’s important to hold on to the things that have always provided us with stability and comfort. For a lot of people, this is music and other artistic outlets. A pandemic in today’s society could never restrict happiness and creativity, and the many innovators in our society have proven this.