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Live entertainment giant AEG Presents to require proof of vaccination; COVID test won’t do

AEG Presents, one of the biggest companies in the live entertainment business, announced Thursday that it will require proof of vaccination at its venues, shows and festivals starting Oct. 1. Any application in Alabama likely will be prevented by state law, however.

AEG Presents is a major player — some of its best-known ventures include the Coachella festival, the New Orleans Jazz Heritage Festival and Alabama’s Hangout Music Fest — and its stance is stronger than most, since it doesn’t include a provision allowing patrons to present a fresh COVID test result. A company statement released Thursday made clear that that is deliberate.

“The vaccination policy, limited only as required by law, will be in full effect nationwide no later than October 1, 2021,” said the statement. “Several venues have already been following local government vaccination mandates, with others anticipated to come in the weeks leading up to October 1. The date was chosen specifically to allow time for any eligible unvaccinated ticketholders and staff to reach fully vaccinated status should they choose to do so. Leading up to October 1, AEG Presents will be implementing a policy of showing proof of vaccination or a negative Covid test taken within 72 hours of show date where permitted.”

“We have come to the conclusion that, as a market leader, it was up to us to take a real stand on vaccination status,” said Jay Marciano, COO of parent company AEG and Chairman and CEO of AEG Presents. “Just a few weeks ago, we were optimistic about where our business, and country, were heading. The Delta variant, combined with vaccine hesitancy, is pushing us in the wrong direction again. We realize that some people might look at this as a dramatic

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