Skip to main content

What's next in the live events market

From rock bottom, the live events business is returning to health and with it a rental and staging business that has is also addressing virtual production and sustainability

The rental and staging market was all but floored during the pandemic; companies survived on government grants and cultural recovery funds emerging from crisis. That said, there is now a huge amount of positivity around as guests look forward to a better than ever experience of a live performance.

Covid forced event planners to pivot, adapt and innovate at unprecedented levels; events went virtual, outdoors or hybrid. Now live events are the top-growing solution area in pro AV, with an expectation of a 23% increase in associated revenues for EMEA in 2022, and another 19% in 2023 (according to AVIXA IOTA research).

Hybridisation and virtualisation developing faster than the resurgence in overall demand for events. Some events will become fully virtual (with VR), opening the question of how solution providers would evolve to support.

As live events dried up, several rental houses pivoted into supplying kit (LED screens principally) into virtual productions or using their own rental spaces as pop-up VP studios. Rental companies have also been supplying the related market of XR (extended reality) studios and event spaces.

Besides touring shows, large hotels are starting to look at acquiring or hiring LED screens, particularly in the lower pixel pitch range of 1.9mm even 1.5mm. These would form part of a rental offer to corporates alongside the hire of ballrooms and meeting spaces. This demand, as within other venue types, is led by rising expectations of a multimedia experience with a focus on a high-resolution video.

On the audio side, recovery in rental of loudspeakers and arrays is expected in 2023-24, with many companies sweating their stock ahead of fresh investment.

Reducing emissions in events and installations is also high on the agenda in the wake of high-profile sustainable or carbon-neutral branded events like the Commonwealth Games and Coldplay’s ongoing world tour. The emergence of virtual and hybrid events could be doing much of the heavy lifting of sustainability in this sector.

Whether it’s concerts, music festivals, sporting events or product launches, visitors want to be wowed – and ISE has everything needed to achieve this. Your first port of call at ISE 2023 should be Hall 7, where you’ll find both the Audio Zone and the Lighting & Staging Zone.

As well as manufacturers, you’ll also find distributors who carry multiple brands for the live events and rental market. On the LED side among major brands you can expect to see at ISE are Unilumin and its subsidiary ROE, Leyard, Absen, Daktronics and Samsung.  Meyer Sound, L-Acoustics and d&b Audiotechnik are among leading proponents of audio networking protocol Milan.