After dropping an absolutely monster (and varied) three-day lineup, including heavy hitters like Jay-Z, Santana, Dead & Company, Miley Cyrus, and John Fogerty of Creedence Clearwater Revival, the future of the 2019 Woodstock 50 festival is now being questioned – and the whole thing is being compared to ill-fated/straight up scam mess, Fyre Festival.
As reported by USA Today, a spokesperson from the festival’s Japanese financial partner, Dentsu Aegis, has said that the festival is not going ahead. In a statement spread to media outlets like USA Today and Variety, the investment company has said that the Amplifi Live arm of the company has decided to cancel the event.
It’s a dream for agencies to work with iconic brands and to be associated with meaningful movements. We have a strong history of producing experiences that bring people together around common interests and causes which is why we chose to be a part of the Woodstock 50th Anniversary Festival.
But despite our tremendous investment of time, effort and commitment, we don’t believe the production of the festival can be executed as an event worthy of the Woodstock Brand name while also ensuring the health and safety of the artists, partners and attendees.
As a result and after careful consideration, Dentsu Aegis Network’s Amplifi Live, a partner of Woodstock 50, has decided to cancel the festival. As difficult as it is, we believe this is the most prudent decision for all parties involved.
Despite this very heavy claim from the festival’s financial partners, Woodstock’s Michael Lang and the organisation team have stepped forward to say that the festival is still going on as planned, which has led punters to compare the whole thing with Billy McFarland‘s determination to make Fyre Festival happen, against all odds. And we all know how THAT turned out.
Let’s just rebrand Woodstock 50 as “Upstate Fyre Festival” and be done with it.
— Chris Baker (@chrsbakr) April 29, 2019
Woodstock 50 apparently saw the two Fyre Festival docs
— Robert Mills (@Millsy11374) April 29, 2019
The festival’s organisers shared a statement with Vulture to say that the Dentsu Aegis statement is false, and the festival is going ahead as planned over August 16-18.
“Woodstock 50 vehemently denies the festival’s cancellation and legal remedy will (be) sought,” the statement said, adding further confusion to the whole situation, especially after the tickets sale date was pushed back from April 22, to an unknown date.
At the time of writing, tickets were still not on sale, even though the festival is scheduled to kick off in just over three months’ time.
We’ll keep this one updated as we find out more, because who knows what’s to make of this whole mess.
It’s not the only Woodstock anniversary event that’s hit troubled waters, either. Earlier this month, the planned Bethel Woods Festival to be held over four days (on the same weekend) at the OG Woodstock site was scaled back to a couple of separate gigs and film screenings instead, including performances from Ringo Starr and his All Starr Band on August 16, Santana and The Doobie Brothers on August 17, and John Fogerty performing a special gig on August 18.