'It will be a blast': Woodstock 50 organisers deny cancellation
A festival celebrating the 50th anniversary of Woodstock will still go ahead, organisers have said, despite a major financial backer pulling out.
The Woodstock 50 event is set to feature acts including Jay-Z, Miley Cyrus and The Killers in New York in August.
On Monday, its main investor said it could not ensure the “health and safety of the artists, partners and attendees” and would not be providing funding.
However, organisers have insisted the event will still go ahead.
In a statement, Woodstock 50 co-founder Michael Lang and Woodstock LLC said they were “committed to ensuring that the 50th anniversary of Woodstock is marked with a festival deserving of its iconic name and place in American history and culture”.
They said the event would continue despite the announcement from its chief funder, Amplifi Live, the investment arm of digital marketing firm Dentsu Aegis Network.
“Although our financial partner is withdrawing, we will of course be continuing with the planning of the festival and intend to bring on new partners,” the organisers’ statement said.
“The bottom line is, there is going to be a Woodstock 50th Anniversary Festival, as there must be, and it’s going to be a blast.”
More than 80 artists – including John Fogerty, Santana, Imagine Dragons, Robert Plant and The Sensational Space Shifters, The Black Keys, Chance the Rapper and Janelle Monae – have been announced as performers at the event, scheduled for 16-18 August.
In its statement, Amplifi Live said: “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.”
The event is set to take place about 115 miles (185km) northwest of the original site. It is separate from an anniversary concert planned at the site of the original festival in 1969, with acts including Ringo Starr, Fogerty and Santana.
The problems have led to comparisons with 2017’s infamous Fyre Festival, which became the subject of two documentaries after customers were left stranded on an island in the Bahamas.