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The Touring Music Festival Format.

Andy Robertson

There are thousands of music festivals that take place around the world every year. They range in size from multi day mega festivals with over 100k visitors to small local specialist festivals on a single day. In the current pandemic climate, the music festival format that is most well equipped to ride the storm may be the touring music festival.


Some of these touring music festivals have emerged either after consolidation between festival organisers or initiatives by ambitious event management companies. The format is quite simple with roughly the same line up the touring festival takes place over one or two days in one location before moving on to another on a different weekend. These touring festivals can be just two locations on two different weekends or in some cases as many as ten locations spread over several months.

This format of music festival may well be best suited to fit within the current ongoing coronavirus restrictions. They provide the ultimate in flexibility as venues and dates can be confirmed or cancelled depending on the prevailing situation at that time or in that location. If a lockdown occurs in one location it is unlikely this will affect other venue locations and dates.

Some of the logistics may be more complicated but the principles remain the same. By keeping the same performance artist line up and format the artist and stage management should be relatively straightforward as most logistics can be duplicated for each location and date. Of course, there may well be differences but the overall planning and scheduling will be similar. With a choice of dates and venue locations the organisers retain great flexibility so that if one festival has to be cancelled their other events can proceed.

Although the touring single day music festival format has grown out of large countries with dispersed populations like Australia and North America, they have been gaining traction in Europe too. With the current travel restrictions still affecting international travel the touring music festival format could gain popularity with event goers. However, there are still challenges with moving an entire line up of artists from one country to another, not only in tackling travel restrictions but in visa requirements. The recent musicians visa debacle in Europe has not helped the situation as visa free travel between EU member states and the UK has yet to be resolved.

For event goers these touring festivals are becoming more popular and attractive because they can select a location and date that suits them rather than having to commit to specific date. In addition, if their selected date and location is cancelled because of coronavirus they may have the opportunity to attend an alternative festival date and location with the same artist line up without having to obtain a refund and re booking a new event.

For any music festival organisers planning their events in 2021 using a software management platform like Festival Pro gives them all the functionality they need manage every aspect of their touring music festival. The guys who are responsible for this software have been in the front line of event management for many years and the features are built from that experience and are performance artists themselves. The Festival Pro platform is easy to use and has comprehensive features with specific modules for managing artists, contractors, venues/stages, vendors, volunteers, sponsors guestlists and ticketing. 
Image by Uwe Conrad from Pixabay

Andy Robertson
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