People in New Zealand were able to attend a number of non-socially distanced events over the holidays, thanks to their successful handling of the coronavirus crisis. New Year’s Eve (NYE) events were held in New Zealand (NZ), with festivals welcoming tens of thousands of people to celebrate.
20,000 people were welcomed to Rhythm and Vines, NZ’s largest festival, between 29th and 31st of December where social distancing and mask-wearing was not required. The 18th edition of the music and camping festival delivered sets from a number of artists and sold single-day festival passes from NZ$125 (€73.59).
Elsewhere, Rhythm & Alps celebrated its 10th anniversary in Wanaka with three days of non-socially distanced festivities. 10,000 people attended the resort town on NZ’s South Island. The event took place between 29th and 31st of December, bringing in the New Year with a wholly domestic lineup featuring Six60, Chaos in the CBD and Shihad.
Northern Bass, presented by Fuzen and George FM, also celebrated its 10th chapter with another NYE celebration spanning three days and nights in Mangawhai – just over an hour north of Auckland. Around 10,000 people flocked to the festival site for sets from world-renowned artists, producers and DJs including Dimension, Earthgang and LAB.
This was only made possible to take place as a result of the country’s successful handling of the coronavirus crisis. NZ has been lauded for its response to the pandemic and currently has only 72 active Coronavirus cases, in a population of around 4.8 million. Strict lockdowns and border closures have all but eliminated COVID-19 in NZ, enabling residents to enjoy a full return to live NYE events.
Unlike NZ, Ireland and the UK will have to wait a little longer to begin plans for festivals and live events in 2021. Glastonbury organiser Emily Eavis recently updated people about this year’s festival, which has not yet been cancelled. Last month, Eavis said the festival was “a long way” away from being able to confirm next year’s event but, also stressed that it hasn’t been pulled.
“Obviously the vaccine news in recent weeks has increased our chances,” she said, “but I think we’re still quite a long way from being able to say we’re confident 2021 will go ahead.”