Concerts in the Covid-19 era

Chloe Collazo, Staff Writer

COVID-19 has affected many people’s lives, regardless of who they are or what they do. But the pandemic has not only affected people, it also affected the events that people would usually not even question about attending before. 

Covid rules depend on the venue that is holding the concert. Masks have only been required at certain events at the Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse, audience members that were attending Style’s concert needed to wear a mask throughout the whole concert experience and also needed to provide proof of a negative Covid test within the time span of 48 hours and provide proof of vaccination from the Covid virus at the doors of the arena. With the latest Omicron surge, masks have been temporarily mandated for all Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse events.

When Maroon 5 came to Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio on August 26, 2020, they performed at the Blossom Music Center. There, attendees did need to show proof of a vaccination or a negative Covid-19 test at the doors, but did not need to wear a mask throughout the concert. 

Harry Styles, a pop music artist, recently came to Cleveland on Oct. 18 with concert opener Jenny Lewis. In order to attend, there were many more requirements that had to be met to see the pop star than ever before. 

Even though there have been major changes to concerts, Anna Moawad, a 16-year-old junior at Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School, said that “The requirements I had to take didn’t really make a difference for me at least at the concert.” Abby Martello, a 14-year-old freshman at BBHHS, said that social distancing was not practiced at the concert. 

Moawad, along with the group of friends she went to the concert with, had been waiting to go to the Styles concert since April of 2020. The pop star postponed the concert that was originally scheduled to happen July 15th, 2020 because of the pandemic for safety reasons. 

Martello attended the Maroon 5 concert when they came to Blossom. She had been waiting to go to this concert since 2019, but since the pandemic hit so quickly, the band had to reschedule the concert almost 2 years later.

Martello had been waiting to go to this concert since 2019, but since the pandemic hit so quickly, the band had to reschedule the concert almost 2 years later.

The Rocket Mortgage Field House took precautions to have fewer Covid cases. “The arena safety precautions were good. They required what they did to keep everyone safe” said Laura Behel, a 16-year-old junior at BBHHS. 

Blossom Music Center also took steps to keep attendees as safe as possible, even if it made things a little more difficult for people to get into the venue. “It was an inconvenience having to do it, but if it is what I have to do to go to the concert I’ll do it”, Martello said when asked if it was convenient. 

Even though the requirements to get into the arena were different, Mckenna Mack, a 16-year-old junior at BBHHS, said that the actual performance given to the arena of fans was no different from previous years. “The actual experience of Harry’s performance was not changed from other concerts that I have been to in the past.” 

Martello has had her fair share of seeing Maroon 5 perform, having seen the band 3 times before Covid-19 hit the country. She said that the pandemic seemed to have changed their performance in a positive way. “They (Maroon 5)  seemed more excited to be there because they hadn’t performed in a while, making it more fun.”

When asked about their favorite moments from their concert that they know they will never forget, the group all had different things to say. 

“Him (Harry) coming on stage was a moment I will never forget.” Moawad stated 

Bethel recalled the moment when Harry sang “Fine Line” and “Sign of the Times.”

Photo by Kelissa Garten, October 18, 2021 at the Rocket Mortgage Field House (Kelissa Garten)

It is a moment I know I can’t forget. The whole arena was lit up by flashlights on people’s phones for those songs.” 

Another moment Emma Caputo, a 16-year-old junior at BBHHS, said was “The end of Kiwi (One of Harry’s songs) was a great moment I know I can’t forget.”

Overall, Covid-19 has changed everything that people had found normal to do just a few years ago, but with things like the vaccine coming out to try and get rid of the virus, the world is finally starting to ease back into a regular reality.