Who’s Afraid of Live Events? Czech Attitudes in the Time of Corona

Stock photo of a sparse audience wearing masks (source: Freepik)

In late August and early September, a Czech research agency surveyed 1000 Czechs above the age of 15 about their attitudes towards attending live performances during the pandemic. Here are the results.

According to the survey, 54% of respondents have missed attending live performances during the pandemic. Those under 29 report missing live performances the most, along with respondents who attended live performances at least four times a year. However, 56% of respondents wish to wait to attend live events until the pandemic recedes. This is especially the case among older audience members.

When it comes to Czechs’ attitudes towards hygienic measures mandated by the Czech government at live events, chief among them a limit on audience size and mandatory mask-wearing, 53% of respondents said they did not wish to attend live events while the security measures were in place (35% responded they were not discoursed by them at all.)

The agency also asked what measures might contribute to audiences feeling safer at cultural events and might encourage those who were formerly too afraid to attend. About 3/5 of respondents said limiting the number of visitors and having hand sanitizer available at the venue would put them at ease. Over half of respondents also feel more safe when they know the performance spaces are being disinfected, when masks are required, and when they can avoid standing in long lines. About 2/5 would welcome more distance between seats and testing the health of audience members by, for example, measuring their temperatures. A further 17% added that they would feel heartened if they saw others were also attending live events.

The study also found that 39% of respondents watch, or at some point watched, online events conceived as replacements for live music. The viewers of such events tend to be people between 15 and 44 and those who tended to attend more live events before the pandemic.

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