The Future of Music Festival Jobs

The Future of Music Festival Jobs

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused a lot of changes this year, including how the 2020 music festival season played out. Simply put? It didn’t. 

Some of the biggest festivals of the year were either canceled or postponed due to the pandemic, including Austin City Limits, Lollapalooza, and Coachella. Most artists also opted to cancel their tours and shows for the rest of the year, too. Festivals across the globe have been canceled as well, including all over Europe

For concert and festival-goers, not being able to see live shows has been just one more pain caused by the pandemic. While the reason behind these cancellations is to keep everyone safe, it doesn’t make it any less frustrating for those who absolutely love live shows. 

Now, with so many artists and festivals looking ahead to 2021 and beyond, what should we expect for the future? It’s obvious that changes need to take place, including the positions that matter most for people working at festivals. 

With that in mind, let’s take a look at the future of music festival jobs, including which ones could become more prominent, and which ones might become obsolete. 

Jobs That Make Health and Hygiene a Priority

According to Ever After Festival founder Gabriel Mattacchione, preparations are already underway for 2021, and that seems to be the case with most popular concerts. But, because the virus is still running rampant in many parts of the country, it’s hard to plan ahead without knowing what government mandates may be in place. According to Mattacchione, the priority for their festival at the moment is to focus on how to keep people safe. His ideas include things like: 

  • Better options than porta-potties
  • Hand washing/sanitizing stations
  • More pastures near the bar
  • More cleaning efforts

There are plenty of festival-related jobs you can do in order to make these ideas a reality for any festival. In the coming years, concerts will need concentrated marketing efforts. They need people to feel safe and comfortable. 

Whether you’re a designer, a public relations manager, or a social media guru, you can do a lot for music festivals from the comfort of your computer. 

People with event planning experience might also be able to find more jobs at music festivals, especially if you can create a safe environment with things like sanitizer and hygienic bathrooms set up effectively. Bringing people back to these festivals is the main goal, but it won’t happen unless they feel safe, and unless festival organizers know they are less likely to be held liable for anyone getting sick. 

Working “On the Ground” 

If working at the actual festival is more your speed, there will certainly be no shortage of jobs in the future. Some of the most important on-site jobs have become more relevant and necessary than ever, including: 

  • Building and setting up stages
  • Delivering equipment
  • Stocking supplies
  • Delivering food/catering
  • Cleaning and sanitizing surfaces
  • Removing trash

Being part of the operations team at a music festival will be extremely important in the coming years and new positions will likely arise for those working on the ground to keep people safe and healthy. 

When you’re able to work directly at a festival, you experience the advantage of hearing/seeing some great acts and being a part of an electric environment. Both the music itself and spending a lot of time outdoors can be great for your mental and physical health. But, it also involves a lot of walking around and potentially some heavy lifting.

 If you plan on working on the grounds crew at a festival next year, make sure you’re spending some time in nature now and getting in shape for it. As an added bonus, being outside can decrease your stress levels, and who couldn’t use that right now? 

Which Jobs May Go Away? 

Overall, there may be a reduction in the number of people working festival jobs as many of the most popular ones have to face budget cuts from the revenue loss this year. It’s hard to say whether any jobs will become “obsolete” in the future. It’s more likely that positions will be cut back in order to save money. 

With that in mind, if you want to land a festival job it’s extremely important to have a really tight, concise resume that shows off your skills. Your resume should include your: 

  • Hard skills: Any technical skills related directly to the job you want. 
  • Soft skills: Your own personal attributes or traits. 
  • Transferable skills: Things you learned at one job that can be used for another. 

Make sure your resume is easy to read and never too cluttered or wordy. Employers only spend a few seconds looking at a resume before moving onto the next one. With limited jobs likely for festivals in the next few years, you have to do whatever you can to make sure yours stands out. 

Music festivals will eventually return, even if they have to be postponed a bit longer than expected. When they do, everyone can expect some changes when it comes to how they are operated. But, if you’ve worked at festivals in the past and want to be a part of that live show magic again, you can jump on board with those changes and do your part to make the festival experience safe and exciting for everyone in the future. 


Written by Adrian Johansen

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