After coronavirus restrictions forced organizers of the 2020 Preakness Stakes to cancel their slate of musical guests last year, the music is returning to the 146th Preakness with a new, socially-distant entertainment event.
Preakness LIVE will take the place of the traditional InfieldFest this year, hosting 10,000 fans who will be able to watch and listen to the concert in socially distanced pods of eight people.
The event will be held at the Pimlico Race Course on May 15, the day of the 2021 Preakness Stakes.
The musical lineup will include DJ D-Nice, NAACP Image Awards Entertainer of the Year 2 Chainz, and Grammy Award-Winning rapper Jack Harlow.
D-Nice performed exclusively for first responders at the 1/ST Preakness At Home livestream event in May 2020, “the nation’s first full-scale, socially distant drive-in concert,” organizers said.
As he prepares to perform alongside 2 Chainz and Jack Harlow at this year’s Preakness LIVE event, D-Nice said it is a “full circle moment.”
“Now, we are able to come together live for my biggest in-person performance since the pandemic with Preakness LIVE, plus share the experience with my fans all over the world on my #ClubQuarantine Instagram,” he said in a statement. “I’m excited to bring my energy and lift people’s spirits in this safe and socially-distant live experience.”
NBC will also show excerpts of Preakness LIVE performances during the live race day broadcast from 5-7 p.m., and D-Nice will live stream the concert from his Instagram account.
During the pandemic, event organizers have had to adapt how they present entertainment to audiences, said 1/ST EXPERIENCE CEO Jimmy Vargas.
“This year has given us an opportunity to maximize our entertainment offering and reimagine the race day experience for fans utilizing our ample outdoor spaces,” Vargas said in a statement. “Sporting and music events around the world have evolved to address safety precautions surrounding COVID-19, and we are proud to again innovate world-class entertainment in a safe and comfortable environment, while using our digital capabilities to share the experience globally.”
Those who wish to attend Preakness LIVE can purchase ticket packages ranging from $360 to $2,000 for pods of eight people, or $45 to $350 per person, with prices depending on how far the seats are from the stage. Tickets for Preakness LIVE went on sale Wednesday and can be purchased online at www.preakness.com/tickets.
Attendees will be able to use their phones to order food, drinks, merchandise and other items to their pod and place a wager on the horse race via the 1/ST BET app.
Before the 2020 Preakness InfieldFest was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic, it was supposed to feature performances by rapper DaBaby, EDM artist Marshmello, singer Quinn XCII, DJ duo Two Friends, MTV’s “Jersey Shore” star DJ Pauly D, DJ and producer GATTÜSO, and former professional basketball player Shaquille O’Neal performing as his musical persona DJ Diesel.