UPDATE: Download Festival Australia 2020 has confirmed its cancellation in light of the ongoing coronavirus outbreak.
Download Festival Australia has confirmed that it will go ahead as planned in Sydney and Melbourne later this month, following the cancellation or suspension of several music events worldwide due to coronavirus fears.
A Download rep confirmed to NME Australia today (March 10) that the rock and heavy metal festival will take place on March 20 in Melbourne and March 21 in Sydney as scheduled. “Download 2020 is proceeding as planned, and we are excited to welcome everyone to the event on March 20 and 21,” they said.
When asked if Download would introduce new measures to allay the potential spread of the coronavirus at the events, the rep said, “Safety of our artists, fans, and staff is always our top priority and planned for accordingly.”
Download, whose headliners include My Chemical Romance, In Flames and Deftones, has already suffered a blow to its lineup due to the coronavirus: Last week, Italian band Lacuna Coil pulled out of its exclusive Australia appearances at the festival due to the growing outbreak in their home country. Los Angeles punk group The Bronx were announced as their replacement.
Earlier today, it was reported that Coachella organisers are working with California officials to postpone the April festival, rather than cancel it outright. Last week, Austin, Texas festival/showcase SXSW was cancelled, leaving hundreds of artists – Australians among them – in the lurch.
Earlier today, Miley Cyrus and Lil Nas X’s bushfire benefit concert in Melbourne this Friday (March 13) was cancelled after Cyrus revealed she had been advised by authorities not to travel to Australia.