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Bonnaroo Will Require Vaccination Or Negative Test As Live Music Adapts To Delta

The crowd at Bonnaroo 2008.
Rob Loud
Getty Images
The crowd at Bonnaroo 2008.

The Bonnaroomusic festival will require proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a negative COVID test to attend. In a series of Tweets, organizers of the popular music festival strongly encouraged full vaccination, reminding attendees that the last day to receive the second shot of Moderna or Pfizer, or a single dose of Johnson and Johnson, will be Aug. 19th.

Festival organizers are requesting that unvaccinated individuals wear a mask at all times. Indoors, masks will be required regardless of vaccination status.

Bonnaroo, based in Manchester, Tenn., was among the first big festivals to announce its return after the initial wave of COVID cancellations, boasting a diverse lineup including Foo Fighters, Megan Thee Stallion, the Grand Ole Opry and Tyler, The Creator as headliners.

Similarly, organizers of Milwaukee's Summerfestalso announced today that vaccination or a negative COVID test will be required to attend.

The move comes at a time when the delta variant is throwing a wrench into the big re-opening of live music. This year's New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival was cancelled and pushed to next year, with organizers citing "the current exponential growth of new COVID cases in New Orleans and the region and the ongoing public health emergency."

On top of that, a handful of artists and bands have either postponed or cancelled shows in recent days. Fall Out Boy dropped out of its Boston, New York City, and Washington, D.C. appearances on the Hella Mega tour due to someone on their teamtesting positive for COVID. Counting Crows postponed dates in Boston and Youngstown, Ohio due to "a confirmed COVID case" within the touring party. Limp Bizkit lead singer Fred Durst told Billboardearlier today that cancelling the rest of their August dates was done to "ensure the safety of the audience as a whole.

"We all — individually and as a whole — have to make our best efforts to be as responsible and proactive as possible moving forward to combat and stop spreading COVID," Durst said.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Andrew Limbong is a reporter for NPR's Arts Desk, where he does pieces on anything remotely related to arts or culture, from streamers looking for mental health on Twitch to Britney Spears' fight over her conservatorship. He's also covered the near collapse of the live music industry during the coronavirus pandemic. He's the host of NPR's Book of the Day podcast and a frequent host on Life Kit.