#018 Sustainability

Ticket Scalping In, Social Distancing Out

Today's read ... 9️⃣ minutes

We may have to wait a little longer for Coachella. Still, with sold-out arenas in New Zealand and the Save Our Stages Act passing through the House of Representatives, the live music industry remains hopeful going into the new year. This week we hear how industry professionals Alexandra Thompson and Marina McCoy are creating a zero waste culture at festivals and how Michigan is legalizing ticket scalping; wait, what?!

Deja vu strikes the festival industry as Coachella postpones 2021 dates could be moved from April to October again. Fall 2021 is starting to look stacked as more concerts follow their lead, but how will radius clauses affect which festivals artists choose to play?

This week Back of House is teaming up with Waste Free Earth to give one lucky winner a ticket to The Sustainable Events ForumEnter here for a chance to win! Make sure to share your giveaway link with friends. The more you share, the greater chance you have to win. 

A new D.C. program will allow six venues to host small-scale concerts under a “controlled environment” from now until the end of October. Each show will allow a maximum of 50 guests, and all performances will be limited to three hours or less.

Great news for Pennsylvania! Capacity limits for indoor and outdoor events have expanded! While mask and social distancing protocols will still be in place, the new policy will allow up to 7,500 people to attend, depending of course on the venue's capacity.

Las Vegas is getting serious about getting back to events. While the conventions' capacity will soon increase to allow 1,000 people, Wynn Resort looks to build an on-site testing lab to help keep attendees safe against COVID-19.

Ticket scalping is now legal in Michigan; meanwhile, Ireland pushes for harsher punishments on resellers, including fines and even imprisonment.

What seems like a daydream to the rest of the world, New Zealand can host live events with zero social distancing guidelines. The final night of Benne’s arena tour has sold out at 12,000 people, and the concert will be available via live stream.

In June, Australia formed an organization made up of some of the biggest promoters from down under. The Live Entertainment Industry Forum has since released ground-breaking industry-wide guidelines that are a point of reference for venues and promoters to operate safely.

The event industry shows promising updates across the world as the “Save Our Stages Act” passes through the house in the United States, Apollo Hall in Barcelona hosts a pilot concert with over 1,000 participants, and Picknick Konzerte successfully concludes their 63 show run! Remember their story from last month?

No, that distinctive deep voice you hear on 21 Savage’s latest project, Savage Mode II, isn’t God speaking to you (though he’s played the character in many movies), it’s Morgan Freeman!

5,000 T-shirts to 20,000 Masks

Time to put those 2020 concert tees to work! Everywhere Apparel is partnering with artists from John Mayer to The Lumineers to repurpose what would have been wasted touring merchandise into reusable face masks. The project called Music4Masks has helped distribute 20,000 masks and counting to hospitals, food pantries, and women's shelters. "It doesn't wind up in a landfill, and each shirt can make five or six two-ply masks," said partner Dave Schools. Here's how you can help the ongoing efforts at Music4Masks:

  • Bands can make t-shirt donations on the Music4Masks website

  • Pre-order an Everywhere mask ($20 of proceeds will be donated to Sewing for Lives)

  • Donate to Operation School Bus, Sewing for Lives' current project that provides schools with masks

Jam Session without Borders

Each year, musicians in San Diego and Tijuana gather at the border wall for an international music festival called the “Fandango Fronterizo.” They stand a few feet apart, separated only by the wall. Together, they celebrate the music of Son Jarocho - a mix of Indigenous, Spanish, and African sounds. When Grammy-winning composer Arturo O’Farrill read about the festival, he decided to make a live album inspired by the two countries unified by music. Since the event has inspired the film “Fandango at the Wall.” His hope for the album is to not only “destroy geopolitical differences” but also to encourage other producers to record music in its rawest form, live and without borders.

Sustainable Events Forum Ticket GIVEAWAY  

The Sustainable Events Forum (October 21-23) will feature leaders from across the industry, tackling discussions such as Climate Action as a Business Decision and Hotels and Venues.

  • Learn about initiatives and resources to help with your business sustainability goals and strategies.

  • Stay current on what venues and destinations are doing to address social, environmental, and societal challenges.

Back of House Guest Posts feature some of our favorite people from across the industry sharing their expertise. If you would like to be featured in a future issue, or know someone who would, email us at [email protected].Alexandra Thompson and Marina McCoy started their careers in the events industry with a focus on sustainability. Alexandra wrote her honors senior thesis on the topic and has brought her sustainability lens vision to the various freelance roles she’s held throughout the festival world. Marina founded her company after realizing her own hypocrisy of studying sustainable tourism but attending festivals with little regard to her waste consumption. Alexandra and Marina met two years ago at Mempho Music Festival and have been implementing zero waste strategies together ever since.“Before the pandemic, Waste Free Earth specialized in producing zero waste events. Through building custom zero waste strategies, we helped lessen the environmental impact and reduce overall waste consumption for hundreds of thousands of event guests and their hosts each year. 

    At MTV’s SnowGlobe last year, we were able to:

    • Decrease overall waste consumption by 90,717 pounds in 2019 alone

    • Donate over 3,704 pounds of warm clothing, housing material and products, along with food and beverages to local shelters in need

    • Save approximately 64,087 single-use plastic water bottles by using water refill stations

    • Educate staff using informative signage, manuals, and trainings for waste diversion

    • Offer a promotional merch portal of sustainable goods so festival and sponsor brands could build stronger connections to attendees with “swag” that they continue to use in their daily lives

    • Create a promotional merch portal of sustainable goods, so festival and sponsorship brands could sell “swag” that attendees could continue to use in their daily lives

    The Future of Production - Zero Waste

    We genuinely believe that the future of events and business development starts with the foundation of zero waste behaviors. If zero waste operations are a priority from day one, production teams save money, time, and effort as the business scales. We are launching our crowdfunding campaign, Zero Waste Kickstart, to help startups and small businesses learn how to implement zero waste strategies in their operations. Working at events has taught us a great deal about consumption and waste systems. We’re so excited to broaden our impact by sharing that knowledge with other industries, so please support us by sharing with your network!Waste During COVID-19The average American produces 4.5 pounds of landfill waste per day. With less than 4% of the world’s population, the U.S. produces more than 30% of the planet’s total waste.But is it possible to live with less waste during a pandemic? Absolutely!Consumption of single-use plastic has increased by over 250% in the US since the outbreak of COVID-19. That doesn’t have to be the case moving forward. Virologists, epidemiologists, and health experts deemed reusables safe to use.We encourage you to rethink every day waste and as we move forward in the events industry. We at Waste Free Earth want you to feel empowered to ditch single-use items with some relatively easy tips during the pandemic. We hope you incorporate these tips into your daily life post-pandemic too! 

    Have you made efforts to decreaseyour waste consumption during the pandemic?

    Reply back with what you've been doing!

    Last Week's Results:

    90% of BOH subscribers

    have been using their extra time to work towards certifications and learn new skills. 

    ▶️ Impossible Foods is hiring for multiple roles, from Sales Account Executives to Supply Chain Managers.

    ▶️ AWAL is hiring an Associate Director, Catalog Marketing, with experience executing marketing campaigns with artists and strong proficiency in GSuite.

    ▶️Looptworks is looking for a Community Engagement Specialist to develop and execute their customer-facing identity and communications

    ▶️ Maryland just became the first state to ban foam containers statewide!

    ▶️ Waste Not is a simple way to search for an open-source database of sustainable suppliers.

    ▶️ Planet Earth narrator, David Attenborough, has set a world record after gaining 1 Million Instagram followers in just four hours after joining the platform.

    October 14: The International Live Events Association (ILEA) hosts an ILEAFORUM discussion on creating a space for authentic diversity, equity, and inclusion in the live events industry.October 14: Australia's Live Entertainment Industry Forum (LEIF) is holding a one-day conference that will bring together leaders of the industry to share best practice experiences, insights, tips, and techniques.October 15: Brand Summit dives into a discussion on best practices of how to develop meaningful partnerships between the music and cannabis industries through a conversation with a recording artist and brand executive.October 21: The first of three days for the Sustainable Events Forum for sustainable event education, creativity, networking, action plan creation, and more! (Enter to win a free pass here

    Written while listening to "Yellow Lights" by Harry Hudson