Update: Following the publishing of this article, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that the state's Department of Health will conduct an investigation into the "Safe & Sound Hamptons" concert.
The Chainsmokers' recent performance in the Hamptons appeared to defy social distancing guidelines largely instated by medical experts in light of COVID-19. Announced earlier in the month, the event was the first leg of a charity concert series in support of a number of organizations and featured additional performances from Goldman Sachs CEO David Solomon, who performs under the moniker DJ D-Sol, Southampton Town Supervisor Jay Schneiderman's band, and Matt White.
At the time of writing, the ticketing page for the concert is still active and highlights the rules and guidelines for the event. Organizers initially stated that they intended to provide a "new live event concept" that is both "safe and enjoyable" and carried out in a "controlled and safe environment."
The coronavirus crisis has taken a major toll on many families and individuals across the globe and we wanted to bring a new live event concept to life by giving communities a sense of celebration and closeness that they’ve been missing, in a safe and enjoyable way. We came up with the “Safe & Sound” fundraiser to be an intimate platform for artists to connect with fans in unique ways through sounds in a controlled and safe environment. Concertgoers will have the chance to experience a comfortable evening outdoors along-side their cars with live music, games, custom coolers and more, as we adjust to this next wave of live events.
As evidenced by the renderings below, which are featured on the ticketing page, each group of attendees (4 to 6 people per car) was to be given a designated spot on the concert grounds, where they could park their vehicle and view the show.
It's important to note that drive-in shows during the COVID-19 pandemic using a similar format have been successful while complying with social distancing guidelines mandated by local governments. However, many people online have been criticizing both the artists and organizers involved with this particular event as damning footage continues to circulate online that shows attendees defying safety recommendations.
On the ticketing page, organizers stated that those who leave their designated area for any reason other than to use the bathroom would be asked to leave.
Guests may not leave there [sic] 20 x 20 for VIP or 20 x 15 area for GA unless using a restroom (mask required). This will insure [sic] social distancing and the safety of all guests. Guests not adhering to this policy will be asked to leave the event.
An Instagram Story post from Disruptor Records founder and manager of The Chainsmokers, Adam Alpert, has been screen-recorded and widely shared online. Many have questioned whether or not the aforementioned policy was upheld due to the video, which reportedly shows a group of much larger than six in close proximity at the event. In his Instagram Story post, Alpert wrote that there were 3,000 attendees confined to their space with only the people they arrived with.
Alpert also mentioned that every patron had their temperature checked before arrival—a statement that has drawn criticism due to the fact that Johns Hopkins Medicine and other researchers maintain that one can still be infected with COVID-19 without a fever or any symptoms at all.
Moreover, a Twitter user managed to obtain a screenshot of an attendee's Instagram Story post that features the show's flier. The image reveals that there are several more iterations in the concert series planned in other major cities. At the time of writing, no information is available about whether or not the additional concerts are moving forward in the wake of the backlash from the Hamptons show. The Chainsmokers have also not responded publicly.