The coronavirus lockdown has been harsh on pretty much every sector of the global economy, none more so than the entertainment and events .
In the concluding part of this two-part series, ‘iGlobal’ caught up with Amit Anand, the Founder of entertainment events company Divine Musiq to explore how he has kept the music alive through lockdown.
Divine Musiq is a cutting edge entertainment service, offering a range of services from audio-visual corporate events and multi-cultural to parties and themed club nights. The entertainment company has travelled widely with its services, covering countries such as India, Canada, Europe, and Cape Town.
Prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, the company had approximately 300-400 weddings booked. As the UK government announced the tough restrictions as part of efforts to control the spread of infections last year, for Divine Musiq it meant stepping into new and uncharted waters.
Anand recalls: “As a company, we did at least seven weddings from March to December; they were intimate 15 people weddings. We had to strip back the package right down to a very basic set up.
“It was a whole new avenue for us to go from 500-600 people weddings to then have to strip everything down.”
It was not just the financial impact to deal with, but also a focus on relationship building with clients.
“When the hit, we had to talk to couples who were panicking. We also had to learn as a company what is the most faithful way to do things in alignment with the law, as at that time there were no clear regulations, guidelines, or laws on what to do,” says Anand.
“Clients were requesting for refunds and we had spent a lot of time and effort in planning these weddings. It not only affected us financially, but a lot of the time was spent on changing dates to the end of the year, which had to be cancelled. When we are talking about adapting, we had to adapt with the laws and adapt to how to treat clients and make it fair without tarnishing the relationships with them by making sure we come to a mutual agreement,” he explains.
Hopping onto the popular trend of online live streaming and Zoom parities, Divine Musiq began live streaming weddings and organised DJ sessions to keep the momentum going, which helped keep a positive outlook through the tough times.
“We also did corporate online events and small intimate weddings when it was allowed. However, we had to overcome many hurdles, such as the government announcing a change in restrictions two days before a wedding or event, which left us back at square one.”
On the future of the entertainment industry’s connect with virtual venues, Anand believes it will be an option that will stick around.
“Even if wedding ceremonies are opened up for 300+ people, there is still that option to live stream for family members who can’t make it. I also think it will be an option for clients to not have the elderly and vulnerable groups at crowded events, but ensure they can enjoy the special event from the comfort and safety of their own homes.”