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Norway's biggest rock and metal event would not be covered by the government's festival insurance scheme due to its June date
By IQ on 14 Apr 2021
Norway’s biggest rock and metal festival, Tons of Rock, is the first major Norwegian festival to cancel its 2021 edition.
The Live Nation-owned festival had been scheduled to take place in Ekebergsletta, Oslo, across three days in June but the organisers say this year’s event is not possible.
“Since the summer of 2020, we have been working on all possible scenarios and options to make it possible to complete the festival,” reads a statement on the festival’s website.
“It has been and is a difficult and demanding time, and it is now clear that it is not possible to hold the Tons of Rock Festival in 2021. This is very sad and frustrating for all of us in Tons of Rock, for the artists, suppliers, collaborators and mostly for our amazing audience from all over Norway and more than 50 nations.”
The Norwegian government previously announced a NOK 350 million cancellation insurance fund for festivals, allowing organisers to plan for this summer without the financial risk posed by a potential Covid outbreak.
“It has been and is a difficult and demanding time, and it is now clear that it’s not possible to hold the festival”
However, Norway’s minister of culture, Abid Raja, said in a press conference that the scheme is expected to cover July and August events – meaning Tons of Rock’s June edition would not be insured.
Though Tons of Rock would have been ineligible for that particular government support, the festival did benefit from the state’s compensation scheme for organisers and subcontractors in the cultural sector.
In February, the festival was granted NOK 36.1 m, the full amount applied for by the organisers, for the cancellation of the 2020 edition – caused by the government’s extended ban on major live events.
The festival will return next year between 23–25 June, with headliner Iron Maiden.
Other major Norwegian festivals including Live Nation-owned Bergenfest and Superstruct’s Øya Festival, are still going ahead at the time of writing.
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