In this week’s I have caught our interest around the web, news of parties being cancelled thanks to the coronavirus outbreak, more bad news for touring DJs thanks to Brexit, a bizarre vinyl cutting machine, and a DJ/producer who spins without the use of his right arm. That and more below…
Nightclubs, festivals and concert organizers across Asia are being forced to cancel or postpone gigs amid escalating global concerns over the coronavirus.
The coronavirus, technically an umbrella term for a large group of respiratory infections including the common cold, was officially renamed by the World Health Organization as COVID-19 last week. Like influenza, the coronavirus spreads among people in close contact, leading Asian health officials to recommend the cancellation of large-scale events. This has dealt huge financial and logistical blows to the live music and nightlife industry in Asia.
In China, where the coronavirus originated in the city of Wuhan, the number of confirmed infections have crossed the 70,000 mark. Several venues have closed their doors on orders from authorities. TAG, an underground club in Chengdu, announced its temporary closure and the cancellation of its annual seven-day Spring Festival in late January. In a statement on Facebook, TAG said it will « wait indefinitely until the situation is stable to open the door again. »
Loopy, a pillar of Hangzhou’s experimental electronic community, has also temporarily closed after cancelling several February and March bookings for artists such as Mama Snake, Russel E.L. Butler and DEBONAIR. Despite being forced to shoulder economic losses, club manager Yifei Shu told Resident Advisor he supported the authorities’ decision and he hoped to resume operations by late March.
Outside of China, neighboring dance communities are also hurting. Several international artists scheduled to perform in Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong have called off or delayed gigs amid worries over travelling to Asia, according to promoters. After China, Singapore currently holds the highest number of cases of COVID-19, followed by Japan and Hong Kong.