Covid Concerts

Paris, Marseille to hold experimental concerts to test Covid transmission

In Marseille, a test concert is planned with French rap band IAM (here in 2018). They will play at the Dôme concert hall in front of 1,000 people.
In Marseille, a test concert is planned with French rap band IAM (here in 2018). They will play at the Dôme concert hall in front of 1,000 people. © AFP/Fred Tanneau
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The French research Institute Inserm is to carry out tests in the coming months to analyse the transmission of the coronavirus. Amid growing calls for the country's crippled culture sector to be revived, the culture ministry has said it will experiment with "standing" concerts, which it says present much more of a challenge than seated venues. 

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The ministry is looking for a model that will allow the reopening of concert venues during the Covid-19 epidemic, culture minister Roselyne Bachelot said as she announced the standing concert experiments, scheduled to take place from March in Marseille and Paris.

"I'm very optimistic for seated festivals... For standing shows, it's more complicated, that is why I'm conducting these experiments," Bachelot told LCI TV.

Popular rap band IAM will play are to play in front of 1,000 people in the auditorium of the Dôme in Marseille, "seated with the possibility of standing up".

Positive cases to take part

The experiment will be conducted with the Inserm, a public establishment dedicated to health and research.

All people will be tested before the concert, and positive cases "will not be filtered out because it is necessary to put oneself in a situation where there will be shuffling".

Tests will also be carried out after the event, to see what this has led to in terms of contamination. Masks and hydroalcoholic gel will be distributed.

In Paris, 5,000 people will take part in an experiment in the large Accor Arena hall with the Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris (AP-HP), "a standing gauge concert", with a test group next to the 5,000 people, the minister said.

Bachelot also announced that a European scientific conference, scheduled for 8 April in Marseille, where the various experiments will be "confronted" and studied in order to build "a resilient model" for the entertainment world.

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