The 50th anniversary festival has been beset by reports that it won't go ahead
One of the organisers of Woodstock 50 has issued a new statement on the rumours the festival has been cancelled.
Yesterday (April 29), Dentsu-Aegis, the primary financial partner for the planned 50th anniversary event, announced they had pulled their backing and that the festival would not go ahead.
The company said in a statement that they don’t “believe the production of the festival can be executed as an event worthy of the Woodstock brand name.” “As a result and after careful consideration, Dentsu Aegis Network’s Amplifi Live, a partner of Woodstock 50, has decided to cancel the festival,” they added.
Organiser Michael Lang later responded, saying the company “do not have the right to unilaterally cancel the festival.”
Now, Lang has issued a longer statement addressing the situation. “It seems in a way that history is repeating itself,” he wrote. “In July of 1969 we lost our site in Walkill and with only a month to go, we managed to move to Bethel. Woodstock was going to happen no matter what!”
He continued to explain that the community in Dix and Watkins Glen, New York – where the 50th anniversary event is due to be held – “have been really wonderful” and that venue Watkin Glens International “have been totally supportive and professional.”
Turning his attention to yesterday’s reports, Lang wrote: “Yesterday, our financial partner, Dentsu-Aegis, made the decision to pull out and informed us that they were cancelling the festival at the same time they let the press release go public. We have yet to understand why they would try to prevent the festival from happening by seemingly undermining us in this way. It is one thing to decide for oneself that it is best to move on, but it is entirely another thing to try and close the door on us.”
He assured fans that the festival was continuing to work with “NYS, Schuyler County and various parties to keep things on track”, calling the support of activism and sustainability “too important to be derailed by shortsighted partners.”
“Woodstock never belonged to Dentsu, so they don’t have a right to cancel it,” he concluded. “Woodstock belongs to the people and it always will. We don’t give up and Woodstock 50 will take place and will be a blast!”
Yesterday’s announcement by Dentsu-Aegis was the latest in a string of reported issues surrounding the festival. Ticket sales were postponed earlier this month, while The Black Keys pulled out of their headline slot, citing “a scheduling conflict.”
Woodstock 50 is scheduled to take place on August 16-18 in Watkins Glen, New York. It is due to be headlined by The Killers, Dead & Company, Jay-Z, with other stage headliners including Miley Cyrus, Santana, Chance The Rapper, Imagine Dragons, and Halsey.