BST Hyde Park, Lollapalooza Paris cancel
Leaving large festival-shaped holes in their respective countries’ summer calendars, AEG Presents’ British Summer Time Hyde Park and Live Nation France’s Lollapalooza Berlin today (30 March) became the latest high-profile European open airs to confirm they won’t be going ahead in 2021.
In a statement, the 65,000-capacity British Summer Time (BST), which was scheduled for the second weekend of July, says both previously announced 2021 headline shows, Duran Duran and Pearl Jam, will instead take place in July 2022, with support from Nile Rodgers/Chic and Pixies plus another special guest, respectively.
“Following our review of the most recent government advice, the latest timeline means that we are unable to deliver with certainty the quality BST Hyde Park is known for in the time available,” say organisers.
“By making this decision at this stage we allow everyone … to plan accordingly”
“By making this decision at this stage we allow artists, crew, fans and everyone that comes together to help create these shows to plan accordingly.”
All BST 2020 and 2021 tickets remain valid for 2022, although cash refunds are also available from the point of purchase.
In France, where the latest regulations permit a maximum of just 5,000 people, all seated, at summer events, Lollapalooza Paris says “current uncertainties” prevent the festival from delivering its “Lolla magic” for Parisian fans this year.
The 50,000-capacity festival, which would have taken place at the Longchamp Racecourse on 17 and 18 July, had also announced Pearl Jam for 2021, with much of the 2020 line-up, which included Billie Eilish, Asap Rocky, Vampire Weekend and Khalid, also expected to be carried over.
Pearl Jam will now play next year’s festival, set for 16–17 July 2022.
Colours of Ostrava celebrates with ‘Non-Festival’
Colours of Ostrava, the biggest international music festival in the Czech Republic, marked its original 2020 dates with a series of small, sold-out ‘non-festivals’ of music and cirus.
Held at the Colours festival site at Lower Vítkovice, an ex-ironworks in the city of Ostrava, NeFestival (‘Non-Festival’) Colours of Ostrava was organised for mid-July, after Colours of Ostrava was forced to pull the 2020 edition of the festival as a result of the growing Covid-19 crisis. Events of up to 1,000 people were allowed in the Czech Republic from the end of May.
“We invite you to celebrate with us that we can once again be together, enjoy live music, theatre and discussions,” said festival director Zlata Holušová. “That we can once again drink beer, or whatever we like to, and that we can once more discuss important issues and everyday things face to face.”
With its NeFestival, Colours of Ostrava (45,000-cap.) becomes one of the only major European festivals to have held a physical event in this year, along with Lollapalooza Paris, Rock Werchter and several Mediterranean beach events.
The first 1,000-capacity NeFestival event took place on 15 July and featured a show by circus company Cirk La Putyka, whose 45 acrobats, performers, dancers and guest artists juggled, walked the tightrope and danced across the industrial steel landscape of Lower Vítkovice. The evening closed with a concert by Czech band Tata Bojs.
Czech authorities reduced the maximum capacity to 100 midway through the festival, forcing the cancellation of days 3–4
The 16 July show saw performances from more Czech bands, DJ sets and a screening of a pre-recorded ‘quarantine concert’ by Dubioza Kolektiv.
While NeFestival Colours of Ostrava was originally planned for 15–18 July – the original Colours of Ostrava dates – Czech authorities once again reduced the maximum capacity for events (to 100) midway through the festival, forcing the cancellation of days three and four. “Under such conditions, the Non-Festival had to be cancelled immediately, putting the organisers, as well as everyone in the supply chain and about 350 associated workers, in an extremely precarious situation,” organisers explain.
The events which did take place were livestreamed to digital audiences, while the atmosphere on site was enhanced by light columns placed where Colours of Ostrava’s stages should have been, and which were visible from across the city.
Colours of Ostrava 2021 takes place 14–17 July 2020. Its line-up, rolled over from 2020, includes the Killers, Twenty One Pilots, Martin Garrix, the Lumineers, LP and Youssou N’Dour and many more. Tickets are priced at 125 for a four-day pass and available from www.colours.cz.
Covid-safe Lolla Paris to take place in July
The team behind Lollapalooza Paris has joined forces with Parisian couture house Balmain to host a one-day, musical picnic event on 19 July.
The adapted edition of Lolla Paris, which will take place on the original festival weekend at its home at the ParisLongchamp Racecourse, is also put on in collaboration with Michelin-starred French chef Jean Imbert and champagne brand Veuve Clicquot.
C3 Presents and Live Nation France called off the 2020 edition of Lolla Paris, which was set to feature Billie Eilish, Pearl Jam, Asap Rocky, Vampire Weekend and Rita Ora, due to the coronavirus pandemic and ensuing country-wide event ban.
Now, as touring gets set to return to France next month and venues, including stadiums and racetracks from 11 July, are allowed to host up to 5,000 people, a tailor-made Lollapalooza Paris 2020 is to take place.
Fans will sit on picnic blankets designed for the event by Balmain’s artistic director, Olivier Rousteing, and sample a menu prepared by Lolla chef Jean Imbert, accompanied by a bottle of Veuve Clicquot rosé champagne with wine and food pairing.
“[The event] will celebrate a certain French art of living in an exceptional summer setting”
The event will take place in compliance with current sanitary rules and distancing measures.
Tickets go on sale on Thursday 2 July at 10 a.m. CET on the Balmain website. Proceeds from ticket sales will go towards the Global Fund’s Covid-19 response, in collaboration with HIV/AIDS charity (RED).
To further raise awareness and funds, five customised pairs of Balmain trainers and several collector’s picnic blankets will be sold online on the day of the event with all profits raised going to the fund.
Angelo Gopee, general manager of Live Nation France, says the collaboration between Balmain and Lollapalooza, “two emblematic brands with an international reputation”, was “obvious”. “[The event] will celebrate a certain French art of living in an exceptional summer setting.”
“If there was one thing that the months of confinement made very clear, it was how much of life’s beauty that we had taken for granted,” adds Rousteing. “Forced apart, we realised how important it was to be together. Locked inside, we longed for the beauty of springtime in Paris.”
A full programme of content for Lolla Paris 2020 will be available online soon.
Macron: No French festivals until mid-July
French festival favourites including Eurockéennes de Belfort, Solidays, Festival d’Avignon and Main Square are no longer taking place this year, as the government extends its ban on large gatherings until mid-July at the earliest.
French president Emmanuel Macron announced yesterday (13 April) that the country’s lockdown will last until 11 May, with schools and day centres reopening on that date. However, many businesses including restaurants, bars, music venues, and theatres will remain shuttered.
No festivals or other public events are expected to take place until “at least mid-July”.
The cancellations of Eurockéennes, Solidays and Festival d’Avignon add to those of fellow French festivals Hellfest and Lollapalooza Paris, which were called off last week. The Stockholm edition of the Lollapalooza festival brand was also cancelled last week, although the franchise’s Berlin event is going ahead from 5 to 6 September.
“From the very first news of the lockdown, this cancellation seemed unavoidable,” reads a statement from the organisers of Eurockéennes, winner of the best festival award at this year’s Arthurs.
The event, which was attended by 130,000 people in 2019, was due to take place from 2 to 4 July, featuring acts including Massive Attack, the Lumineers, Foals, Burna Boy, Cage the Elephant and Marc Rebillet. Refund information will be available from 20 April.
“It has now become a reality. Unfortunately this cancellation presents some serious questions about the future of the festival and of (non-profit festival organiser) Territoire de Musiques. Facing a complex financial situation, Eurockéennes will suffer long-term from this dark year.”
“The decision to cancel the festival is one of the most difficult ones we have ever had to make”
Main Square festival, due to take place from 3 to 5 July in the city of Arras, is another event to lose its 2020 edition. “This is obviously a blow to all of us, but your enthusiasm gives us the energy we need to offer you next year what will be the most beautiful edition of the festival in Arras,” reads a statement from organisers.
Sting, Twenty One Pilots, Tones and I, Black Eyed Peas, Sum 41 and Roger Hodgson were among artists billed to play the sold-out event. Tickets will remain valid for the 2021 event, with details of the refund process to be announced in coming weeks.
Solidays festival (70,000-cap.), scheduled to take place at Paris’ Longchamp Hippodrome from 19 to 21 June featuring Anderson Paak, Aya Nakamura, Black Eyed Peas and Metronomy, also announced its cancellation following Macron’s announcement.
Refunds will be available from the start of May, say organisers, adding that, given the situation, “perhaps some will choose not to ask for one”.
Festival d’Avignon, a multi-venue festival of theatre due to take place from 3 to 23 July across the city of Avignon, is another to cancel due to the ban extension, with organisers saying: “We have held out hope for as long as it was possible but the situation has called for another outcome. Our duty now is to preserve and invent the future of Avignon Festival.”
The drama festival was set to celebrate its 74th outing in 2020.
Other French festivals including Festival de Nîmes, scheduled from 16 June to 24 July, Lyon’s Nuits Sonores, which was initially postponed from the end of May until 22 to 26 July, and Vieilles Charrues, set for 16 to 19 July, have also called off their 2020 outings.
Festival Fever: more 2020 line-ups under the microscope
Continuing the series of 2020 line-up announcements, IQ reveals what’s in store for the debut of Pitchfork Music Festival Berlin and the Festival Internacional de Benicàssim’s first year under a new promoter, as well as what’s on offer at old favourites Byron Bay Bluesfest, Exit Festival, Lovebox and more.
(See the previous edition of Festival Fever here.)
Byron Bay Bluesfest
When: 9 to 13 April
Where: Tyagarah Tea Tree Farm, New South Wales, Australia
How many: 25,000
Byron Bay Bluesfest celebrated its 30th outing last year, with performances from Jack Johnson, Ben Harper, Mavis Staples and Kasey Chambers, among others.
The Peter Noble-led event is back in 2020, with acts including Dave Matthews Band, Crowded House, Patti Smith, George Benson, Lenny Kravitz, Brandi Carlile, Frank Turner and Xavier Rudd appearing on the bill.
A report undertaken earlier this year revealed that the festival contributed over AU$83 million (£43.5m) to the local economy in 2019.
Tickets for Byron Bay Bluesfest are available here, with five-day tickets costing AU$639 (£335), three-day passes priced at $440 (£230) and a single-day ticket available for $195 (£102).
The festival contributed over £43.5 million to the local economy in 2019
Down the Rabbit Hole
When: 17 to 19 July
Where: Groene Heuvels Park, the Netherlands
How many: 35,000
The Netherlands’ Down the Rabbit Hole last year saw performance from the Editors, Janelle Monae, Underworld and Thom Yorke.
The event, promoted by Mojo Concerts which last year celebrated its 50th anniversary, has announced a handful of acts for the 2020 edition, including Tyler the Creator, Disclosure, Beck, Kacey Musgraves, Haim, Bombay Bicycle Club, FKA Twigs, Charli XCX and Loyle Carner.
Elsewhere, acts for Mojo’s hip-hop festival Woo Hah! Include Kendrick Lamar, Asap Ferg, Aitch and DaBaby.
The Netherlands’ Down the Rabbit Hole last year saw performance from the Editors, Janelle Monae, and Thom Yorke
When: 9 to 12 July
Where: Petrovaradin Fortress, Novi Sad, Serbia
How many: 55,000
Serbia’s Exit Festival is gearing up for its 20th anniversary in 2020, with organisers promising that the event’s special birthday will be celebrated in style. Acts announced for the 2020 edition so far include David Guetta, Tyga, Fatboy Slim, James Arthur and Meduza.
Last year’s festival, which saw record crowds of 200,000 over four days, saw performances from the Cure, Greta van Fleet, the Chainsmokers and Amelie Lens.
Founded as a social activism project in 2000, Exit has grown over the years while maintaining its roots. 2020 will see the launch of the festival’s Life Stream initiative, which aims to engage festivalgoers in the fight against climate change.
Tickets for Exit Festival 2020 are available here, with tickets costing £89 plus £27 for camping.
Organisers promise that the event’s special birthday will be celebrated in style
Festival Internacional de Benicàssim (FIB)
When: 16 to 19 July
Where: Costa del Azahar, Spain
How many: 50,000
The first outing for the Festival Internacional de Benicàssim (FIB) under new leadership will take place in July, following its acquisition by Spanish promoter the Music Republic earlier this year.
The 2020 event will see performances from acts including Liam Gallagher, the Libertines, Foals, Vampire Weekend, Khalid, Martin Garrix and Steve Aoki.
The Music Republic added FIB to its portfolio of Spanish festivals, which includes Arenal Sound, Viña Rock, Granada Sound and Madrid Salvaje, after buying it from Maraworld, a Madrid-based promoter majority owned by MCD Productions and SJM Concerts.
David and Toño Sánchez, owners of the Music Republic, state they aim to “maintain [FIB’s] essence and position it once more as a leader on the global scene.”
Tickets for FIB 2020 are available here for €65 (£55) for a full pass.
The first outing for the FIB under new leadership will take place in July
When: 11 to 13 June
Where: Ippodromo delle Cascine, Florence, Italy
How many: 11,000
Italian rock festival Firenze Rocks is returning for its fourth year in 2020 with Guns N’ Roses, Green Day and Red Hot Chili Peppers heading up the event.
The Guns N’ Roses appearance is part of a wider European tour that will see the veteran rockers play in Portugal, Spain, Germany, the UK, Sweden, Austria, Switzerland, Poland, Czech Republic and the Netherlands.
The Live Nation-promoted festival last year saw performances from Ed Sheeran, the Cure, Tool and Eddie Vedder, with Foo Fighters, Iron Maiden and Ozzy Osbourne among those to have played the event in recent years.
Tickets for Firenze Rocks 2020 are available here for €271.40 for four days (£230).
Italian rock festival Firenze Rocks is returning for its fourth year in 2020 with Guns N’ Roses, Green Day and Red Hot Chili Peppers
When: 18 to 19 July
Where: Hippodrome de Longchamp, Paris, France
How many: 55,000
The fourth annual Lollapalooza Paris will feature headliners Pearl Jam and Billie Eilish, along with Vampire Weekend, Khalid, Burna Boy, Haim, Rita Ora, Illenium, the Struts and more, as over 40 acts will play at the four-stage event over two days.
Launched in 2017 as a further string to the Lollapalooza franchise bow, the Live Nation-promoted Lollapalooza Paris last year saw performances from the Strokes, Twenty one Pilots, martin Garrix, the 1975 and Bad Bunny.
The Paris event is one of three European editions of Lollapalooza, together with Lollapalooza Stockholm and Berlin.
Tickets for Lollapalooza Paris are available here, priced at €79 (£67) for a one-day pass and €139 (£118) for a weekend ticket.
The fourth annual Lollapalooza Paris will feature headliners Pearl Jam and Billie Eilish
When: 12 to 14 June
Where: Gunnersbury Park, London, UK
How many: 40,000
Mama Festivals’ Lovebox festival is returning for its third year at the Gunnersbury Park site in west London. The three-day event, which was founded in 2002, will be headed up by Khalid, Disclosure and Tyler the Creator in 2020.
Other acts appearing at the festival include Hot Chip, Jorja Smith, Anderson Paak and the Free Nationals, FKA Twigs, Charli XCX, Peggy Gou, Mabel and Little Simz.
Gunnersbury Park has also been home to Mama’s Citadel festival for the past two years, with year’s line-up featuring Catfish and the Bottlemen, Bastille, Friendly Fires and Bear’s Den.
Sister company Festival Republic launched a new festival at the site in September this year. The inaugural Gunnersville saw performances from Doves, the Specials and You Me at Six.
Tickets for Lovebox 2020 are available here, with a three-day tickets costing £149.50 and one-day passes costing £72.50.
Mama Festivals’ Lovebox festival is returning for its third year at the Gunnersbury Park site in west London
Pitchfork Music Festival Berlin
When: 8 to 9 May
Where: Tempodrom, Berlin, Germany
How many: 3,500
The team behind US-based magazine Pitchfork revealed plans for the inaugural Pitchfork Music festival Berlin at this year’s Reeperbahn Festival in Hamburg, adding to events in Chicago and Paris.
The festival, promoted by Scumeck Sabottka’s MCT Agentur, will see headline performances from Lianna La Havas and Modeselektor, with Nike Hakim, Celeste, Tim Hecker and John Talabot also appearing on the bill.
Launched in 2006, the Chicago edition of Pitchfork Music Festival this year saw performances from Haim, the Isley Brothers, Robyn and Pusha T. The more recent Pitchfork Paris has taken place since 2011 and last year featured Skepta, the 1975, Chromatics and Charli XCX.
Tickets for Pitchfork Music Festival Berlin 2020 are available here, with two-day tickets costing €99 (£84) and one-day passes priced at €58 (£49).
Pearl Jam line up 13-date European summer
Pearl Jam are embarking on a European tour this summer, with nine arena dates scheduled around the continent and four headline festival shows.
The band’s summer tour kicks off on 23 June 2020 at Frankfurt’s Festhalle (13,500-cap.) – the group’s first show in the German city since 1992 – ending a month later at the Ziggo Dome in Amsterdam (17,000-cap.).
The tour includes four festival headline appearances at Lollapalooza Stockholm (27 June) and Paris (19 July), Rock Werchter Festival in Belgium (2 July) and British Summer Time (BST) Hyde Park in the UK (10 July).
Pearl Jam are also visiting arenas in Berlin (Waldbuhne, 22,290-cap.), Copenhagen (Royal Arena, 13,000-cap.), Vienna (Wiener Stadhalle, 16,000-cap.), Krakow (Tauron Arena, 18,000-cap.), Budapest (Budapest Arena, 12,500-cap.) and Zurich (Hallenstadion, 15,000-cap.).
Pearl Jam are embarking on a European tour this summer, with nine arena dates and four headline festival shows
The band is also playing at the 60,000-capacity Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari race track in Imola, Italy.
Support acts for the arena and race track shows are Pixies, Idles and White Reaper.
Tickets go on sale for all concert dates and the BST Hyde Park show on Saturday 7 December at 10 a.m. GMT. As of yesterday (1 December), Pearl Jam Ten club members can access a pre-sale on all non-festival tickets.
Lollapalooza Stockholm tickets are on sale now at the early-bird price of SEK 2,295 (£186), with tickets for the Paris edition becoming available on 4 December at 10 a.m. CET. Rock Werchter tickets go on sale on 6 December at 10 a.m. CET.
A full list of tour dates and support acts can be found here.
Macron dedicates €225m to French cultural sector
French president Emmanuel Macron has pledged to create a €225 million public fund to benefit creative companies in the country, as he warns against growing US and Chinese dominance in the sector.
Macron announced the fund to a crowd of 130 cultural industry executives at the Elysée Palace. The funding was one of the recommendations made in a report concerning the private financing of film and audiovisual production in France by film producer Dominique Boutonnat.
The fund will be operated by the Public Investment Bank (banque publique d’investissement).
The French president also warned the executives against the dominance of US companies such as Netflix, Disney and Apple, as well as emerging Chinese competitors.
“I truly believe that if we do not organise ourselves, the battle is lost,” stated Macron at the Elysée Palace meeting, highlighting the need for collective action to combat US and Chinese tech giants.
“I truly believe that if we do not organise ourselves, the battle is lost”
A collective action plan will be outlined by the French Ministry of Culture in cooperation with the cultural industry sector by the end of the year.
This is the second time this month that the French president has called upon the EU to pool resources in the name of culture. In the aftermath of the devastating fire at Notre Dame cathedral on 15 April, Macron called for collective action to safeguard historical sites and protect “European heritage”.
US cultural sector dominance has been criticised by French politicians in the past. In 2017, former French culture minister Jack Lang denounced Live Nation’s inaugural Lollapalooza Paris festival as an “invasion of the musical life of France by American multinationals”.
The Paris edition of Lollapalooza returns for its third year in July, featuring headline performances from Twenty One Pilots and the Strokes.
110,000+ attend homegrown Lollapalooza Paris 2017
The first edition of Lollapalooza Paris, which took place last weekend, has been hailed as a success by promoter Live Nation France, which has praised the festival as a triumph of “local initiative” in the face of criticism by former culture minister Jack Lang.
Lang – a veteran Socialist party politician who served as France’s minister of culture from 1981–86 and 1988–92 – on Saturday attacked the new festival, announced in October, as part of an “invasion of the musical life of France by American multinationals”.
According to Lang, Live Nation is threatening France’s domestic, often public subsidised, festival scene with the “extension of its empire” across the country. (The company’s most recent French acquisition was Nous Productions last August.)
He also took a swipe at AEG, which is believed to be going into partnership with Matthieu Pigasse’s LNEI Live on Rock en Seine, saying the rival promoter is “already scandalously present in [Paris] with AccorHotels Arena”.
“We would have been delighted to welcome Mr Lang to the festival, so that he realises that it is a local initiative, produced by a French company called Live Nation France”
Live Nation France issued a statement in response to Lang’s attack, with deputy GM Matthias Leullier saying he “would have been delighted to welcome Mr Lang to the festival, so that he realises that it is a local initiative, produced by a French company called Live Nation France”. Leullier also notes Live Nation France has 65 permanent employees and hired 1,500 people for Lollapalooza, all of which “are paid, and not by public subsidies.”
According to Le Figaro, no fewer than 110,000 people attended Lollapalooza Paris 2017, held at the Longchamp racecourse – the home of Download Paris, also a Live Nation production – on 22 and 23 July. Headliners were Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Weeknd, Imagine Dragons, Lana Del Rey, London Grammar and DJ Snake.
Lollapalooza, revived in Chicago by Live Nation’s C3 Presents in 2005, is now staged in five other cities worldwide: Sao Paulo, Buenos Aires, Berlin, Paris and Chilean capital Santiago.
Lolla Paris, Download Madrid confirmed for 2017
Two major Live Nation festival brands look set to be increasing their presence in continental Europe in 2017.
In an interview yesterday with French magazine Télérama, Live Nation France’s managing director, Angelo Gopee, revealed Paris will host its own edition of Lollapalooza next July. Taking place on 22 and 23 July at the Longchamp racecourse – the home of the French edition of fellow Live Nation event Download – Lollapalooza Paris will become the fifth international version of the long-running Chicago festival, founded in 1991 by Jane’s Addiction’s Perry Farrell, after Santiago, Chile; Sao Paolo; Buenos Aires; and, most recently, Berlin.
Gopee says the promoter wants to take advantage of the lack of any competing events in the French capital on that weekend, “when many tourists are present in Paris and France”. He declined to name any potential acts, but promised Live Nation would focus on booking “the best possible artists”.
Live Nation is seeking to take advantage of the lack of any competing events in Paris on that weekend
On the same day, reports surfaced in the Spanish press that metal festival Download – held since 2003 in Donington Park, UK, and since 2016 in Paris – would take place in Madrid for the first time next June. The news initially leaked via a Bandsintown listing showing System of a Down playing at Download Festival in Madrid, Spain, before an official website launched later in the day.
No venue has yet been revealed, although IQ has contacted Live Nation Spain for comment.