Good Day Sunshine: Busselton music festival to use world-first rotating stage at COVID-safe event
In a world-first, a COVID-safe music festival in Busselton will use a rotating stage and four separate crowd zones in an effort to revive large-scale live events in WA.
Top local and interstate live artists John Butler, Xavier Rudd, Josh Pyke and the Waifs’ Vikki Thorn will play “in the round” on the Turntable Stage to a total of 5000 fans at Good Day Sunshine on October 31.
A car-display turntable has been repurposed for the revolving stage, which will complete a revolution every few minutes.
There will be a reduced capacity of 1250 in each of four areas named after famous South West surf spots: Cobblestones, Windmills, The Point and Injidup.
Each zone at Barnard Park on the Busselton foreshore will operate as an individual festival with its own entry, exit and amenities, while a static sound system and large LED screens will ensure sound and vision as the stage turns.
Once inside the live music industry’s version of C Restaurant, patrons have to remain in their chosen area for the duration of the event, which is backed by the City of Busselton.
WA promoters Macro Music chief Ross Macpherson said the format was designed to decrease the risk of any virus spread, lower numbers for contact tracing if there is an outbreak and allow patrons to adhere to the current restrictions of 2 sqm per person.
All interstate artists will quarantine for 14 days before the concert.
“The health and safety of our patrons and the State of WA are our top priority,” he said.
“And, of course, if a situation arises that prevents us from going ahead, we will be prepared to refund tickets.”
The international live event industry has created new models in an effort to stage music festivals during the pandemic, including holding concerts at drive-in cinemas and putting groups of punters in socially distanced viewing platforms.
Mr Macpherson hopes other promoters check out Good Day Sunshine’s COVID-safe spin on the live gig.
“I would be flattered if this format was to be used by other events in Australia and across the world,” he said.
“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,” Mr Macpherson added. “It is a great opportunity for some creative thinking from the live music community.”
I would be flattered if this format was to be used by other events in Australia and across the world.
The promoter added that with car-display turntables available in all States, the stage production could be replicated elsewhere.
“Our challenge is building the elevated stage flush around the turntable for equipment transitions,” he said.
“The (turning) speed of the stage is regulated by the production manager.
“We’re envisioning a revolution every few minutes but will work with the artists prior to gates open.”
Also featuring performances from Kyle Lionhart, Dulcie and Moon and Honey, Good Day Sunshine will have COVID-safety teams as well as messages on the big screens and other signage reminding patrons to physically distance.
Concert-goers will be encouraged to bring picnic blankets and low back chairs to create their own “social bubbles” at Barnard Park.
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