In Gov. Newsom’s four-phase plan to reopen the state, concerts are Phase 4

Governor Gavin Newsom
On Tuesday, California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced a four-phase plan to reopen the state.
(Associated Press)

Concerts in California will be on hold until a vaccine or other therapeutic treatments for COVID-19 are developed, according to Gov. Gavin Newsom.

In a new four-step plan outlined by Newsom on Tuesday morning, some aspects of California’s economy could start reopening in less than a month. “We believe we are weeks, not months, away from making meaningful modifications” to the current shutdown rules, Newsom said.

Retail and offices, movie theaters and religious services will be among the businesses and events to resume in the second and third phases of the plan. Mass gatherings will be, as expected, in the final tier of public life to resume.

Stage 4 means “reopening the highest-risk parts of our economy — once therapeutics have been developed,” Newsom wrote on Tuesday. Among the industries singled out? Concerts, live sports and conventions.

“Therapeutics” don’t necessarily mean a COVID-19 vaccine, which scientists say is 12 to 18 months away from being widely available (therapeutic drugs are used to successfully manage HIV, for instance).


The concert and event industries were among the first and hardest hit by COVID-19 and will likely be the last to recover.

“I know we’re all ready for life to go back to normal,” Newsom wrote. “But it’s unbelievably important we reopen our economy in a scientific, thoughtful way, guided by public health. Our stores will look different. Offices will operate differently. But we will be healthier.”