Frankfurt, fashion and filth – stadiums get creative in 2020

From mini events to international fashion shows and all other types of extravaganzas, arena operators around the world are getting creative in developing plans for their under-utilised facilities.

Deutsche Bank Park Frankfurt has successfully completed its LIVE IM PARK series of events, which welcomed eight days of socially distanced crowds.

The series at the 51,500-capacity stadium, home to German Bundesliga club Eintracht Frankfurt, saw a small event stage set up in front of the business seats especially for the new event format. Restricted crowds attended Bee Gees and Queen tribute shows, film screenings and talks and panel sessions.

The set-up allowed visitors to experience the music and entertainment program outdoors, in line with COVID-19 measures. It also ensured traceability and fan safety through personalised tickets, a limit on the maximum number of visitors per event day and capacity management guaranteed a safe minimum distance of 1.5m between the guests.

Patrik Meyer, managing director of Eintracht Frankfurt Stadion, said: “Despite the external circumstances, we can draw an all-round satisfactory conclusion. Not only the event designed for the LIVE IM PARK event series and taking into account the official requirements set-up, but also the always exemplary and considerate behaviour of all spectators, enabled a safe and successful implementation of the event, which was always Corona compliant.”

Elsewhere, fashion house Celine launched its spring/summer 2021 collection at a behind-closed-doors event at Monaco’s Stade Louis II, the home of the Ligue 1 football club.

Taking over the stadium, Celine had models, including Kaia Gerber, walk around the athletics track to ‘I Like Him’ by Princess Nokia. The location was the perfect match for the sporty collection, the latest from creative director Hedi Slimane.

While venues are looking for new events they can host in the current climate, one Russian stadium operator has taken creative programming a step too far.

Rostov Arena, which hosted five games at the 2018 FIFA World Cup, has reportedly fired a director who allowed an ‘erotic photo session’ to take place at FC Rostov’s 45,000-capacity home stadium.

Pavel Gavrikov allegedly let semi-naked models pose in the stadium for an ad campaign during a shoot in September.

Russia Today claims that Gavrikov has been fired after “a pornographic photo session at the stadium and a huge scandal after one of the pics leaked on social media despite the governor’s instructions to prevent provocative photos from going online.”