After months and months of restrictions that prohibit attending or hosting large public events, and sometimes even small ones, due to COVID-19, the impact on just about everyone in the entertainment industry, from performers to event planners and the fans, has been devastating.
A report published in December 2020 revealed that what had been projected to be a record year for the concert industry was likely to end with over $30 billion in losses, with shows and tours canceled due to the pandemic. And, that's just live music performances alone. Fortunately, as restrictions start to loosen, in many places, organizations and individuals can now host some smaller private events provided social distancing, mask-wearing, etc., protocols are followed. Virtual entertainment used for parties celebrating everything from birthdays and anniversaries to baby showers and corporate events and many other types of gatherings are always a possibility too.
Depending on your budget, the options can vary for booking entertainment, but you'll find a wide range of ideas that can suit smaller gatherings as well as virtual events.
You'll find many great options available on talent booking apps for an acoustic performance, which can be ideal for smaller, intimate gatherings that allow for social distancing. They add a classy vibe to any event like a dinner party, allowing guests to enjoy the live music while dining and engaging in conversation. An acoustic performance is also less expensive than booking a full band, requiring a smaller amount of space and less equipment.
Magicians and/or Mentalists
Another idea for entertainment when hosting a small gathering is a magician or mentalist. While you might think they're better suited for a large corporate event, festival, or fair, they can be hired for any type of occasion, big, small, public, or private. There are many options for individuals with both skills, too, with multiple profiles available on booking apps. They can provide a more unique, interactive, engaging performance that ensures everyone will have a good time that they're likely to remember for years. Not many props or much space is needed either, with the ability to adjust the show to various requirements, making a magician/mentalist both a flexible and affordable choice.
A Live Recorded Track-Backed Band Performance
You can also book a live, recorded track-backed performance, with recordings of other instruments that aren't at the actual live performance. That makes for savings with fewer musicians required, and you won't need as much space either. The music will sound like a full band, but there will only be a smaller number of members performing. It does require a band that's more high-tech, so your options may be limited, but it's still possible to find through many booking apps and agencies.
Many singers, bands, and other musicians are offering to live-stream their shows for virtual events. This is the perfect option when you want to avoid contact with others outside of your bubble while still hosting a celebration. It's also a great way to support the artists during the pandemic, with incomes severely limited or non-existent for many. It's a win-win, bringing entertainment to your guests and helping to put food on the table for someone at the same time. You'll find practically an endless number of options because they don't have to be in your city or even the surrounding area, they can live-stream from anywhere in the world.