One year ago today, the Live Events Industry in the Philippines were united as one voice with the Global Red Alert initiative led by the National Live Events Coalition Philippines (NLECPH). September 1st, 2020 is remembered for the night where event venues, outdoor spaces, iconic buildings and landmarks shined red to support the campaign “Light up in Red”.
The purpose of the campaign was in support of all live event professionals, production companies, technicians, freelancers, performers, musicians, entertainers, venues, art institutions and third parties involved in our industry. Simultaneously, other campaigns participated worldwide in different countries to raise awareness to support the live events industry.
The status for the events industry in the Philippines is uncertain, after eighteen months we are still facing tremendous challenges. There were a couple of months when the situation was improving slowly for our industry; meaning that those areas that were placed under Modified General Community Quarantine (MGCQ) were able to operate between 10% to 50% venue capacity with all health and safety protocols in place.
MICE events, live events, mass gathering, sporting events, entertainment activities are prohibited in areas under Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) which is the strictest form of lockdown, Modified Enhanced Community Quarantine (MECQ) and General Community Quarantine (GCQ).
The community quarantines change depending on the area and the number of COVID-19 cases, every 15 days we get an update from government agencies regarding what will be the next quarantine restriction, which makes it very tough for all parties involved.
To summarize, these eighteen months had been difficult. Some companies pivot to digital, restructure companies to keep afloat, including salary cuts and unfortunately, staff reductions. Many other companies have broken, disappeared or simply changed careers and the rest are hibernating until there is clarity.
Definitely the pandemic has changed how we work, the events industry was one of the first to shut down and we have experienced a drastic hit. Events bring people together and support thousands of jobs. There are possible ways to hold and operate live events following the protocols to keep all participants safe. Undoubtedly, the worst nightmare for our industry.
How did you cope with the situation during this pandemic?
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