Beginning in early March, Big Island music venues began closing one-by-one as the outbreak of COVID-19 completely changed the local entertainment landscape. Tours were canceled, and many musicians started offering fans live-streamed mini-concerts with virtual tip jars.
Post pandemic performances will undoubtedly look and feel much different than the ones we fondly remember. Big Island shows may resume later this year, but attendees might be required to wear masks, and have their temperatures taken before entering. To ensure public health safety, large venues may have to disinfect seats with fog sprayers before shows to reduce the odds of infection. Some studies suggest socially-distanced events may need to stay in place into 2022. Will we see sparsely-attended concerts with a pay-per-view option to supplement empty seat sales? Are post meet-n-greet events with an artist a thing of the past? It’s hard to imagine celebrities signing merch and talking with fans wearing gloves and a mask.
On a happier note, let’s take a look back at 2019 with a slideshow of photos from concerts, dance performances, and musicals that happened on our island.
Music: “Mr. Wasbi Rides Again” by Polyrhthmics
Courtesy of Marmoset Music
Photos: ©2020 Steve Roby