With the summer in full swing, the usually hectic summer festival season was set to be discarded in favour of gearing up for 2021. However, plenty of other organisers have grabbed the bull by the horns after a relaxation in government guidelines and have started setting up new socially-distanced music festivals.
These events are a bid to see out the summer in style, after what can only be described as a torrid first half of the year. So far, initial reviews of social-distanced music event concepts have been glowing. In the case of the example above, many festival-goers have actually preferred having an event with their own space to chill out and dance. Thus, these new concepts born out of a necessity to keep everybody safe could be here to stay.
With plenty of the summer remaining, now is the perfect chance to steal a march on competitors and create the music or outdoor event of the future. So how can we help? We're glad you asked…
Music Festival Stage Hire
What would a music festival be without a stage? Given the restrictions placed upon your audiences, the stage is going to serve as even more of a focal point than it has ever done before. Under current guidelines for outdoor events, there aren't going to be any of those usual festival pastimes such as joining that seemingly never-ending queue for the bar or searching for a food truck. Instead, everything will be brought to your audience in their own socially-distanced spaces.
What that means for you as the event organiser is that whatever is happening on stage has to be more captivating than ever before. While that may seem like a tall order, we are experts at providing all manner of staging that could wow any audience.
Even our smallest 6m x 4m stage has an impressive apex roof system which can provide an imposing presence for smaller-scale events where you might only invite 200 to 250 socially-distanced guests. It's been extremely popular with Christmas light switch ons over the years, which may also succumb to social-distancing measures later this year.
At the other end of the scale, we have large stages available for hire that can support even the most expensive of music festivals. With a self-climbing ARC roof system that has a max roof height of 6.5m and a roof payload of 3500kg, you've got more than enough capacity for even the biggest of lighting or video productions. These stages could easily manage the production requirements for an audience of 5,000, if not more. Far beyond what is likely achievable given the circumstances at this moment in time.
When you look at the events that have proceeded so far, even venues with a capacity of 20,000 have found the socially-distanced audience limit to be around the 2,500 mark. That makes our outdoor stage hire packages a perfect fit, no matter the style or scope of your particular festival concept.
Considerations for a COVID-Secure Outdoor Event
Of course, staging a music festival is going to require a lot more planning and adherence to strict compliance measures than your traditional music event. First of all, you may want to consider hiring small elevated platforms for each group of people attending the event, as was the case for the first social-distanced music concert in the UK.
Then you need to factor in the social-distancing requirements of your stage. Firstly, you're almost certain to require more than your standard footprint for a stage. Remember that all of your performers and technical crew will all need to maintain at least a metre distance from each other, and wearing masks wouldn't be a bad idea even if they are not yet mandatory in outside working environments.
What that means for you if you do indeed hire a festival stage is much larger than usual backstage areas, side stage sections, and expanded on-site dressing rooms for your artists. It also may require you to hire a stage with a much larger surface area that you may have initially envisioned, given that all performers will also have to maintain said distance. Lastly, you'll need to include space for instrument changeovers since they will have to be handled by the performers themselves. Personnel positioned at the side of the stage will be able to hand them a new guitar, for example, due to the risk of cross-contamination.
All of these considerations are aspects we can handle in our stride. In actual fact, we are already working with a few music festivals (one established, one brand new) on creating the perfect COVID-secure stage set up, which will abide by all of the guidelines put in place by the government. All of our team members are already used to working within the new guidelines when it comes to stage-building, setting up sound equipment, and rigging lighting.
Despite the apparent set back to the events industry, we have equipped and supplied our workforce with the necessary PPE to safely carry out our work without putting either yourself, your staff, or our personnel in danger. We've also carried out extensive training with our teams to make sure everyone is happy and comfortable with the new procedures.
Full Event Equipment and Production Services
In many ways, festival stage hire is just the beginning when it comes to working with us on your next COVID-secure project. We also provide all manner of accompanying audio visual equipment and technical services, providing a complete turn-key package for your social-distanced music event. But what do we mean by that exactly?
Suppose you're trying to capitalise on the pent up demand for a party outdoor party this summer and you're a little inexperienced in the events industry. In that case, it's essential to bear in mind that concert stage hire is only the beginning in many ways. It's no good hiring a state-of-the-art stage structure alone. You need to consider all of the other vital elements of event production.
The structure itself is not going to achieve much for you without the help of professional lighting, sound equipment, and all other aspects of event production. Fortunately, being one of the biggest providers of festival stages and production services in the UK, we can help you with this aspect without so much as batting an eyelid. No matter the size or scale of your event, we can provide what you are looking for in terms of PA systems, mixing desks, amplifiers, stage monitors, lighting fixtures and associated trusses, special effects, and LED screens to name a few.
Now we're aware that other outdoor stage hire companies offer similar light and sound services, but can they provide over 70 moving head DMX fixtures, LED pixel bar systems, and some of the biggest OPSL lasers in the UK? What about the technicians to install and oversee their operation? That's without even mentioning our sound capabilities, which only includes artist-rider-friendly audio equipment brands such as MC2, XTA, Midas, OHM, and Shure to name but a few. Once again, we've also got some of the best and most-experienced sound engineers in the business for all of your mixing and production needs.
What About Stage Hire for Other Outdoor Events?
We aren't restricted by industry, and we can provide an outdoor stage for any event, regardless of whether you're hosting a socially-distanced outdoor theatre production or you're looking to hold a drive-in cinema experience. The best part is that we can provide LED screen hire too, providing yet another end-to-end production hire experience for you.
We have a range of sizes that we can provide from 2 metres wide, up to an impressive 12 metres. We can make arrangements to meet the demands of your aspect ratios too, whether that be 16:9 or 4:3, for example.
With regards to other outdoor events, as we highlighted above, we can take on just about anything that requires a stage, regardless of the time of year. From outdoor Christmas concerts to orchestral performances akin to the Proms, we have the hardware and personnel to not only cope, but exceed your expectations. Better yet, our stages comply with all the new EuroSpec 9 requirements and come complete with all the relevant structural calculations and wind loading documents, taking a massive load off your compliance plate.
Speaking of taking a load off your plate, it's just worth mentioning why it makes sense to hire everything from one company for your socially-distanced music festival or outdoor concert.
One Outdoor Stage Hire Package, But Everything You Need
We've always been firm believers in sourcing all production aspects from the same company. Organising a socially-distanced outdoor event with all of the added health and safety requirements is demanding enough. Therefore, it doesn't make sense to hire several companies to hire each different aspect of event production. Multiple contractors on-site and various points of contact (all with differing demands we might add), could leave you with totally unnecessary sleepless nights.
By instructing one company to look after the stage, lighting, sound, and all other event production requirements, the whole process is so much smoother. Everyone on-site is singing from the same hymn sheet, with stage crew, lighting technicians, and sound engineers all familiar with each other's preferences, and only one contact to which you need to relay your requirements.
Given that you could have dozens of suppliers to work with on a musical festival, including catering companies, mobile bars, and Portaloo contractors to name but a few, it makes sense to hire just one company to handle all aspects of event production. Doing so eases several burdens off your shoulders.
Choose Outdoor Stages for your Socially-Distanced Music or Outdoor Event
As we find ourselves navigating the 'new normal,' events that we didn't think we would see for at least another year have been given the green light as long as the necessary extra precautions are in place to ensure the threat of virus transmission is kept to an absolute minimum.
Outdoor music concerts, music festivals, and outdoor cinemas are just a few of the events that have so far gone off without a hitch from a virus standpoint. Here at Outdoor Stages, we are already working with some of our clients on events due to take place in the late summer/early autumn of 2020.
So if you're thinking of hosting a similar event outdoors to minimise the risk surrounding COVID-19, then make sure to call us today to start the conversation. Even if you just want to discuss the protocols and the potential dates, we can pencil you in and begin to walk you through what you need to know before you start marketing your festival to revellers looking for a party to blow away any COVID-related blues!
We're available seven days a week, and we look forward to working with you to create a festival capable of lifting anybody's spirits!