Concerts, live events, and any other type of mass gathering are on complete hiatus for the foreseeable future due to COVID-19 here in North America. Over in Scandinavia, however, where some national governments are handling the global pandemic slightly different than others, the coastal city of Aarhus in Denmark has found a loophole in ban on live entertainment: They’ve successfully launched a new concert series where fans drive up to the venue and remain safely isolated in their automobiles similar to the experience of a drive-in movie.
According to a new report shared by Forbes earlier this week, up to 500 music fans in Aarhus were able to drive their way to a makeshift venue/stage which was quickly built since the start of the pandemic to enjoy the first of many planned concerts with the new viewing format. Fans arrived at the venue in their cars (where they remained) and tuned their radios to the specific FM frequency on which the live audio being performed on the stage in front of them is broadcast.
500 tickets to the first performance from Danish singer-songwriter Mads Langer reportedly sold out in minutes. Fans were also able to engage with Langer using the popular Zoom video-conferencing platform. Attendees used their car horns in place of applause and cheering following the performance of each song, and some fans were even spotted listening in on the performance from the lawn area outside the venue’s fenced perimeter, where they looked to be spaced out enough to abide by the city’s social distancing laws.
“There are only positive messages from our people on the spot,” local police chief Christian Friis said of the live music event, which is quite the anomaly in the current state of the world. “It has been controlled. People have behaved the way they should, and all the cars were out of place within half an hour … There are many people, but most keep a good distance from one another. We’ve been around with patrols, reminding people to keep their distance, even in a queue”
Scroll down to check out video footage of Langer’s performance with the first of many planned shows at the Aarhus drive-up venue.
Mads Langer – Aarhus Drive-In Concert
The Danish aren’t the only ones trying out this temporary live events model, as concert promoters in Lithuania also recently launched a similar drive-in set up to host public performances. According to reports, a series branded as “Drive In Live” organized by ShowArt at the Palūknio Airfield (roughly 30 miles from Lithuania’s capital city of Vilnius) began last weekend and has already featured performances from high-profile European musicians. Only two people are permitted in each car–unless they are from the same family–and no one is allowed to step outside.