In the wake of the tragedies at BPM Festival as well as other recent incidents at various nightclubs and events in 2016, I wanted to take a look at the topic of safety and security at events and briefly outline a few key suggestions to make sure the events you are traveling to are safe.
As anyone in the music industry knows, live performances at venues, events, and festivals are essential to any artist striving to build a career. Performing in front of fans no matter the size is the best way to gain a following and increase notoriety, as well as share new music releases. With that being said, anytime you are performing in front of a big gathering of people, you or the fans that are witnessing your performance can be a potential target for terrorists, angry fans, thieves or any individual with ill intention. It’s important that you are thinking ahead for your own safety as well as the safety of others as much as possible to avoid a potential tragedy. I have outlined a few key ideas and points to keep in mind while performing at any event to keep you ahead of the curve in terms of safety. These ideas are by no means the only things to consider but can offer a basic guide or starting point to ensure a safe performance.
1) Location of Event – We always suggest artists properly research an area of the world they are performing in prior to accepting a performance and understand the landscape. Many areas of the world have security alerts for high crime, kidnapping or terrorist activities. Clearly, it’s important to avoid those areas as you certainly don’t want to find yourself in an environment that lends itself to high risk. Also, research what area of the city the venue or festival is at as well. Virtually every major city has some areas that are slightly more crime-ridden then others so this is something to take into account when sorting out logistics, hotels, etc.
2) Security at Venue – One thing we like to do with our clients is discuss the security situation at the venue, find out if there will be added security by the stage, green room, entry to the stage areas as well as security escort into the club. Typically you want to have security on stage or near the stage to protect both the artist and fans, as well as a security escort into the venue to protect the artist from would be hagglers, etc. Proper venue security is essential to any venue, and if a venue or event does not have this, we typically will not allow our artists to perform.
3) Permits – Ensure the venue, event, festival have proper permits to be in operation. Not having correct permits have added potential that an event can be shut down mid-performance by authorities, or increase a safety hazard should the venue not meet the correct safety codes. Artists are advised not to perform at improperly permitted events as a safety precaution.
4) Emergency Exits – Artists are advised to identify all emergency exits, fire extinguishers, etc when entering the event as a safety precaution. The more you know about the layout the quicker you can evacuate should an emergency take place. This mindset is essential.
5) Advancing – Finally, it’s important to have proper advancing information prior to a performance complete with Emergency Phone numbers to buyers, loved ones, etc. This way you are properly prepared in case there is an emergency and know exactly who to get in touch with.
Proper preparation is the key in ensuring a safe performance not only for the artist but for the fans, as well as ensuring that if there is an emergency you are equipped to handle it to the best of your ability. Hopefully, a few of these tips can give insight into what goes into event safety during performances.