The highly anticipated and publicised Woodstock 50 festival has been officially cancelled, confirms Variety, only two weeks before its scheduled date.
“We are saddened that a series of unforeseen setbacks has made it impossible to put on the festival we imagined with the great line-up we had booked and the social engagement we were anticipating,” shared co-founder of the festival Michael Lang, in an official statement.
The 50th anniversary of the historic 60s festival was plagued with a series of setbacks in the months following its initial announcement. After the official line-up was released, ticket sales were delayed as reports surfaced regarding the festival lacking its required host permits.
Additionally, financial backer Dentsu Aegis Network pulled out of the event, fuelling rumours of the festival’s pending cancellation. This original investor claimed in a statement that the festival production would not be executed in a fashion worthy of the Woodstock brand name, in addition to not being able to ensure a safe and healthy environment for the artists, partners and attendees.
Lang protested Dentsu’s decision by claiming the firm had no right in shutting down the event and eventually took it to the New York Supreme Court. After two days of hearings in early May, a judge ruled that Dentsu was not within the rights to cancel the event and Woodstock 50 could proceed as planned.
While the festival was initially slated to take place at Watkins Glen located in upstate New York, they were unable to secure a venue after multiple attempts and as a result, relocated the festival to Maryland’s Merriweather Post Pavilion less than a week ago.
Prior to its official cancellation, there were many announcements within this past week of artists pulling out of the festival. Eventually, the promoters released all talent booked including Jay-Z, Miley Cyrus, The Black Keys, Santana, Chance the Rapper and The Lumineers, among others.
While the official event has now been officially cancelled, Lang did make a statement voicing his support of the other anniversary event, the Bethel Woods Music and Culture Festival, that will take place on 15-18 August in Bethel, New York, close to the original 1969 festival site. Headliners include original Woodstock performers John Fogerty and Santana, as well as Ringo Starr and his All-Starr Band.
Visit the official venue site for details.