The Week in Light & Sound
Tuesday, 5 October 2021
Passport Control - A consultation into the use of vaccine passports at venues in England has been launched by the government, which could come into force if Covid cases overwhelm the NHS this winter. It raises the possibility of vaccine-only certification being introduced for venues such as theatres, in the event that the government’s ’Plan B’ for autumn and winter is needed.
The Department of Health and Social Care is asking members of the public, and particularly event organisers and venue operators, for their views on vaccine certification. It asks whether the current list of settings in which it could be required – which does not currently include theatres – is too narrow, and if so, what additional venues should be in scope of certification.
If the NHS comes under unsustainable pressure due to Covid-19 cases, the government has prepared a Plan B for England, which proposes that mandatory vaccine-only certification for visitors over 18 be introduced in a number of settings.
These include all nightclubs, indoor crowded venues with 500 or more people where they are likely to move around such as live music venues or large receptions, outdoor crowded settings with 4,000 or more attendees such as music festivals, and any setting with 10,000 or more attendees such as large sports events.
Musical Youth - Billie Eilish has been announced as the first headliner for the 2022 Glastonbury Festival. Organiser Emily Eavis confirmed the booking and said the 20-year-old would be "the youngest solo headliner in our history. This feels like the perfect way for us to return and I cannot wait!"
Eilish will also be the first female headliner since 2016 - although Taylor Swift was booked to play in 2020, before the Covid pandemic put an end to the summer festival season. Glastonbury was also cancelled this year, although organisers staged a virtual event with artists including Coldplay, Wolf Alice and Jorja Smith.
Sing-Along - Musical Six has announced its first sing-along performance at the Vaudeville Theatre in London’s West End. The special performance will take place on January 23, 2022. Audience members will be encouraged to dress up as their favourite character from the musical.
What’s The Story? - Liam Gallagher has announced his planned return to Knebworth, the site of his history-making gigs with Oasis back in 1996. The Knebworth Park performance in Hertfordshire in June 2022 will be the biggest of Gallagher's solo career to date, just as the famous concerts were for Oasis when they played to 250,000 people over two nights 25 years ago.
August 2021 marked the 25th anniversary of Oasis' famous Knebworth gigs when more than 250,000 people descended on Knebworth Park to watch the mega-shows, which took place 10 months after the release of the band's second album (What's The Story) Morning Glory? as they were at the height of their fame.
Retirement Party - Van Halen’s David Lee Roth has announced that he plans to retire from performing. The 66-year-old singer said his final performances would be in Las Vegas early next year. The first in a series of five solo shows will be on New Year's Eve and the last will be on 8 January. He told the Las Vegas Review-Journal, "I am throwing in the shoes. I'm retiring. This is the first - and only - official announcement. You've got the news. Share it with the world. I'm not going to explain the statement. The explanation is in a safe. These are my last five shows."
(Jim Evans)
4 October 2021

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