“The Flaming Lips” Held A ‘Bubble’ Concert Where Each Person Was In Their Own Inflatable Bubble
The concept of social distancing seemed unfathomable before the occurrence of the ongoing pandemic. Unfortunately, not maintaining a safe distance from one another now equates to putting yourself and others at risk. So, to thrive in the “new normal,” this has meant operating under reduced capacity restrictions for most industries. Sadly, business recovery remains slow for the live events industry. Nevertheless, American rock band The Flaming Lips might just have figured out how concerts will be under the new normal.
The band recently held a live concert at The Criterion in Oklahoma City, which happens to be the members’ hometown. However, it was far different from any other concerts held at the music venue. Aside from reducing the capacity from 3,500 to 100, all attendees, including the performers, placed themselves inside individual plastic orbs. So, they essentially managed to practice social distancing as they danced the night away.
As it turns out, the concert was also part of a shoot for the band’s upcoming music video. Apparently, the band’s frontman, Wayne Coyne, was the one who came up with the concept of a “bubble concert.” In an interview, Coyne revealed that the idea came to him while sketching the band performing.
“I did a little drawing… where I drew a picture of The Flaming Lips doing a show in 2019. And I’m the only person in the space bubble, and everybody else is just normal. Then (I did another drawing with) The Flaming Lips playing a show in 2020. The exact same scenario, but I’m in a bubble, and so is everybody else.”
American rock band The Flaming Lips used inflatable plastic orbs to ensure social distancing among all attendees in a recent concert
Nevertheless, using “space bubbles” is not entirely new to the band members, especially to Coyne. In fact, he has been using these inflatable plastic orbs to crowd surf at their concerts since the early 2000s. So, this gave the band confidence to pursue their plan.
“It holds a lot of air. I mean, you can be in there for quite a while. I just don’t think people quite realize what it is as a mechanism. But we’ve just messed with them for so long, we kind of know that it can all work and how it can work and all that.”
Coyne further emphasized how the bubbles contributed to the success of their concert.
“I like the way this looks, because you can get as excited as you want, you can scream as much as you want, you just can’t infect the person next to you, no matter what you forget about, how excited you get. That barrier is still there, they’re protected, and you’re protected… that part of it is what we really felt like was the success.”
Here’s how people reacted to this new normal concert setup