“Allusions to Fyre Festival were so unfounded”: Woodstock 50 festival organiser explains where it all went wrong

It was "an unfortunate venture"

The organiser of Woodstock 50 music festival has shot down past comparisons made between his event and the disastrous Fyre Festival.

In an interview with Rolling Stone published a day after the festival was cancelled, Michael Lang responded to a question about people having linked the fate of the two music festivals together. Lang said such likening was “unfounded” since Fyre Festival was “a scam” and his was an “unfortunate venture”.

Woodstock Music Festival organiser Michael Lang
Woodstock Music Festival organiser Michael Lang


“All those allusions to Fyre Festival were so unfounded. That was all about a scam; about selling tickets without having an event,” he said. “We didn’t put anything on sale until we knew we had the event we were discussing. So I didn’t see any relation to the Fyre Festival.

“[Woodstock 50] was an unfortunate venture, but I chalk it up to having the wrong partners early on,” he continued. “We did everything we could have done and we had the right motivations. We put together what I thought was an amazing lineup of talent. I thought we had all that right.”

Elsewhere in the interview Lang expanded on the festival’s previous statements about the reason for its cancellation, citing its choice of investor as the main issue.

The crowd on day one of the Woodstock Festival in 1969.

“We just frankly picked the wrong partner in Dentsu. They didn’t really understand the business,” Lang said.

“When the agreement went at the last minute of just being a backer to a co-producer, they had input into everything that we did.”

The festival organiser added in the Rolling Stone article that Woodstock is planning to do a fundraiser for HeadCount—a non-profit targeting voter registration–sometime in 2019.

“We’re still very committed to supporting them and the other NGOs we were involved with,” Lang said.