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Malta to host trio of festivals this summer

The southern European island state of Malta is preparing to welcome festivalgoers over the next few months, as it gets set to become one of the only European countries to host large-scale music events this summer.

With one of the lowest rates of Covid-19 in Europe, Malta is lifting lockdown measures – including all international travel restrictions – on 15 July. It is one of 60 countries included in a list of “travel corridors” with the UK, meaning those travelling between the two countries will not need to self-isolate on arrival.

Escape 2 the Island, organised by UK-based promoter Bass Jam, will see artists including Aitch, AJ Tracey, Fredo and Charlie Sloth perform at the Malta Fairs and Convention Centre (MFCC), an indoor and outdoor events venue in the town of Attard, from 28 to 30 August.

The festival is organised in conjunction with the Malta Tourism Authority and Visit Malta. Tickets for the event went on sale on Friday (3 July), priced from €99 for general admission and €129 for VIP.

From 4 to 6 September, Rhythm and Waves festival will take place at outdoor events arena Gianpula Village, with performances from Andy C, Chase and Status, Netsky, Subfocus, Shy FX and Wilkinson.

The southern European island state of Malta is preparing to welcome thousands of festivalgoers over the next few months

Tickets are priced from €119 for general admission and €149 for VIP and can be bought here.

Global dance music brand BPM is holding its inaugural Maltese edition from 11 to 13 September at open-air club Uno Malta.

The line-up for the festival, which has previously taken place in Mexico, Portugal, Israel and Costa Rica, is yet to be announced. Fans can register for pre-sale tickets and further information here.

The fate of events in fellow Mediterranean festival hotspot, Croatia, is hanging in the balance this year, after authorities banned events from taking place on Zrće beach on the island of Pag last week, leading to the cancellation of BSH Events’ BSH Island festival. It had previously been believed that clubs and events on the beach would reopen this week.

Pag is typically home to Hideout, Sonus, Zrce Spring Break Europe and Austria Goes Zrce festivals.

Neighbouring Serbia will host Exit Festival in August, with acts including Amelie Lens, Maceo Plex and Nina Kraviz performing to a 50% capacity crowd at the Petrovaradin fortress in Novi Sad.


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British festivalgoer stabbed to death at Hideout

A British festivalgoer has died and two others have been injured in a brawl at Hideout music festival in Croatia. The victim, who has yet to be named, was found on Zrce beach early on Wednesday morning. Local media reports the incident was drug-related.

The death is thought to have been the result of a fight between two groups of British tourists. British news website the Sun Online reported the attacker, thought to also be British, was being hunted by police after being caught on camera.

Today, local news has reported that police have arrested a British citizen at Split Airport, who fits the description of the suspect. Pictures from the crime scene show forensic teams working behind police tape on the now deserted beach.

Since the incident, festivalgoers have spoken to media to describe what they witnessed. Speaking to the Sun Online, one guest spoke of seeing a “trail of blood” and the victim “with his back covered in blood”. He continued, saying that the DJ stopped playing mid-set and told everyone to leave because there had been a “very serious incident”.

One guest spoke of seeing a “trail of blood” and the victim “with his back covered in blood”

In a statement on their Facebook page, Hideout Festival, which is owned by the UK’s second largest festival operator Global Entertainment, has expressed sadness at the turn of events. It says: “Following an incident involving a group of young men at Zrće Beach early this morning, one man tragically lost his life.

“We are giving every assistance to the investigation and our thoughts and condolences are with the family and friends of the people affected. As always, we are working closely with the local authorities with the safety and security of everyone on site as our top priority.”

The Foreign Office has said it is already working with the victims of yesterdays events. A spokesperson comments: “Staff from the British embassy in Zagreb are supporting the family of a British man who died following an incident in Novalja, and are in contact with the Croatian police and the state attorney.”


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Global acquires Victorious and Hideout Festivals

Just four days after IQ revealed the UK’s largest festival promoter, Live Nation, had acquired Isle of Wight Festival, the second-largest – Ashley Tabor’s Global Entertainment – has made two buys of its own.

With the acquisition of majority stakes in Victorious Festival, a family-friendly festival in Portsmouth, in southern England, and Hideout Festival, an electronic music event on the Croatian island of Pag, Global’s festival portfolio now stands at a total of 17 events, cementing its position as a major player in the increasingly consolidated international festival market.

Global Entertainment, initially headed up by ex-AEG CEO Randy Phillips (now at LiveStyle, the former SFX) entered the festival business in 2015 following the acquisition of Broadwick Live.

“We are continuing to grow our portfolio, with more to come”

Global acquired UK festivals South West Four, Field Day, Boardmasters, Rewind, Y Not and Truck last October. It also promotes Austrian music/ski festival Snowbombing – which will expand to North America this year with the inaugural Snowbombing Canada – and Welsh boutique event Festival №6, as well as Standon Calling, Glass Butter Beach, Lost Village and former Hideout rival Electric Elephant.

In addition to its Entertainment division, which includes music publishing, management and live and touring operations, Global is one of the UK’s largest commercial broadcasters through Global Radio (Heart, Capital, Smooth, Classic FM) and Global Television (Capital TV, Heart TV).

“We are excited to welcome Victorious and Hideout Festival to the family,” says Global COO Ian Hanson. “Each of them is a renowned music festival with a strong and loyal following, and we look forward to working with the festivals’ management teams to grow them to the next level. We are continuing to grow our portfolio, with more to come.”


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