An epic resurgence in the events industry in 2022 is telling us that fans are ready for more live, in-person events, as well as more immersive experiences. Live Nation had a great year in 2022, growing attendance to 121 million fans attending shows across 45 countries – an increase of 24%. President and CEO Michael Rapino sees the demand continuing for 2023, with the largest artist pipeline the company has ever seen.1
With a study completed in 2022, market monitor Luminate also found that 36% of U.S. consumers said they planned on attending a concert in 2023 vs. 15% from 2022.2 What’s more, there’s been a dramatic increase in searches for “concerts” on Google, nearly reaching pre-pandemic levels.
Demand Strong Across Sectors
Pent-up demand is certainly continuing to fuel the surge in live concert attendance after the pandemic. But it’s not just live music. Sports have seen a strong snap-back in attendance levels, while revenues from suites and TV rights are on the rise. And the iconic nature of many stadiums and arenas continues to be a draw for live events of all kinds.
Other sectors are also seeing demand for in-person events, including the video game industry. They’ve turned the corner and are back with in-person conferences and esports tournaments. Even Netflix has gotten into the game, commissioning live in-person immersive events tied to hit shows like Bridgerton.
Live events are back in the corporate sector as well. Trend predictions include more curated and personal events, and for larger gatherings, an emphasis on wellness, including providing sensory-friendly quiet spaces, areas for movement, or guided meditation – as well as an increased focus on sustainability. Unique experiences, attention to staging, and the use of technology continue to accelerate here as well.
Growing Attention on Immersive Events
The definition of a live event continues to evolve as well, with new technology-savvy creators combining music, sound, images, video, live performances, props, and technologies such as projection mapping and augmented reality.
One of the best examples of this is Lighthouse Immersive’s experiences built around the works of Van Gogh, Frida Kahlo, and Gustav Klimt. After a hugely successful run in Paris, the Immersive Van Gogh experience came to North America, selling 5 million tickets at over a dozen venues in North America.
What does this mean for stadiums, arenas, and large venues?
Increased demand means increased planning for host stadiums and arenas – from calendar management to amenities, ticketing, merchandise sales, staging, and field operations. Protecting physical assets and players while offering a spectacular fan, promoter, and artist experience is critical – along with risk management and safety protocols during events.
As fan expectations for the in-person experience continue to rise, so does the need to create opportunities for VIP and interactive experiences. The need to accommodate and blend new technologies into the venue experience becomes increasingly important, along with continued investments in infrastructure.
Looking for creative solutions to help you accommodate more kinds of events in your stadium or arena
1 Live Nation Entertainment Reports Fourth Quarter & Full Year 2022 Results, February 23, 2023 https://www.livenationentertainment.com/2023/02/live-nation-entertainment-reports-fourth-quarter-full-year-2022-results/
2 Luminate U.S. Year-End Music Report for 2022 https://luminatedata.com/reports/luminate-2022-u-s-year-end-report/