Mercifully, Woodstock 50 is Officially Canceled
After months of attempts to salvage Woodstock 50, the promoters have officially canceled the festival, just two weeks before its intended start.
Woodstock 50 was controversial even before financial and hospitality issues began to sink the ship. Despite rock acts like Robert Plant, Greta Van Fleet and the Killers being included, pop and hip-hop acts like Miley Cyrus, Jay-Z and Imagine Dragons took the “summer of love” outing away from its original aesthetic.
Festival funders Dentsu Aegis Network pulled their money from Woodstock 50 back in April, announcing the event’s cancellation despite Woodstock organizers swearing it would continue as scheduled. Woodstock 50 eventually lost Watkins Glen as its location, reportedly due to a missed $150,000 payment.
Permits were continually denied and most recently, artists began pulling out, reminiscent of Blink-182 bailing from Fyre Fest.
“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,” the festival co-founder Michael Lang said in a press statement.
“When we lost the Glen and then Vernon Downs we looked for a way to do some good rather than just cancel. We formed a collaboration with HeadCount to do a smaller event at the Merriweather Pavilion to raise funds for them to get out the vote and for certain NGOs involved in fighting climate change. We released all the talent so any involvement on their part would be voluntary. Due to conflicting radius issues in the DC area many acts were unable to participate and others passed for their own reasons. I would like to encourage artists and agents, who all have been fully paid, to donate 10% of their fees to HeadCount or causes of their choice in the spirit of peace. Woodstock remains committed to social change and will continue to be active in support of HeadCount’s critical mission to get out the vote before the next election. We thank the artists, fans and partners who stood by us even in the face of adversity. My thoughts turn to Bethel and its celebration of our 50th Anniversary to reinforce the values of compassion, human dignity, and the beauty of our differences embraced by Woodstock.”
Festival Guide: 2019 Rock + Metal Festivals in the U.S. + Abroad