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Positivus festival reaps rewards from site move

Positivus founder and CEO Girts Majors has spoken to IQ about how the festival was able to afford its most impressive and expensive line-up yet thanks to a change of location.

Established in 2007, Positivus is the largest popular music and arts festival in the Baltics, welcoming up to 30,000 local and international fans each year.

Muse, Nick Cave, Robert Plant, Iggy Pop, Ellie Goulding, The xx, Sigur Rós and Sinéad O’Connor are among the world-class acts that have performed at the festival, which for 13 years has taken place in the small beach town of Salacgriva.

This year, the festival took place in Lucavsala park – a 370-acre island on the Daugava river in the capital city of Riga – in order to become “more accessible to a wider audience”.

“Riga can provide a green island in the middle of the city… there are not many European cities that can provide such a unique location so close to the city centre,” says Majors.

In total, the festival sold 20,000 tickets – the highest number of visitors in years

Most importantly, the new location has resulted in more financial support (from the city of Riga), a bigger site, and several new sponsorship deals.

And so, despite the financial impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, the festival was able to book its most expensive line-up yet, bringing acts such as Megan Thee Stallion, A$AP Rocky and Thundercat to Latvia for the first time ever.

In total, the festival sold 20,000 tickets – the highest number of visitors in years, according to Girts.

And while the festival encountered typical challenges such as rising costs, USD rate and a loss of regular professionals, not a single artist dropped out of the lineup.

Off the back of the most “impressive” edition in the festival’s history, Girts says: “There are no doubts anymore that our current site can give you the best Positivus festival experience”.

 


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Latvia’s Positivus Festival moves to new location

Positivus, the Baltic region’s largest festival, is moving to a new location in Latvia’s capital city.

After 13 years in the Latvian coastal town of Salacgrīva, the festival will now take place in Riga’s Lucavsala park, located alongside the Daugava river.

Artists including Foo Fighters, Red Hot Chili Peppers, James Arthur, Ed Sheeran and Rammstein have delivered concerts in the park.

Caribou, Thundercat, Yves Tumor, Moses Sumney, Black Midi and Black Country, New Road have also been confirmed

This year’s edition of Positivus will see artists including A$AP Rocky, Megan Thee Stallion and Jamie xx perform in Lucavsala on 15 and 16 July.

Caribou, Thundercat, Yves Tumor & Its band, SoFaygo, Bas, Moses Sumney, Black Midi and Black Country, New Road have also been confirmed.

Positivus has gathered up to 30,000 fans from Latvia and abroad every year between 2007 and 2019, when it took a two-year break due to the pandemic.

The festival has previously hosted the likes of Muse, Nick Cave, Robert Plant, Iggy Pop, Imagine Dragons, Ellie Goulding, The xx, Sigur Rós and Sinéad O’Connor.

 


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Latvia paves the way for float-in music festivals

Latvia is the latest country to come up with a creative format for socially distanced concerts after pioneering float-in music festival, Laiva.

The one-day festival took place on Lake Jugla and saw 1,500 people in boats watch Laima Jansone, Tautumeitas and Dagamba perform on the shores, at the Latvian Ethnographic Open-Air Museum.

Guests were invited to either rent a boat or bring their own, provided it fell into the category of a rowing boat, SUP board, or a motorboat with a lift motor.

The festival, which took place on 8 August, was streamed live on TV channel LMT Straume and organisers dubbed it “a phenomenal evening”.

From deck chair concerts in Germany to tuk-tuk drive-ins in Thailand and bike-in concerts in Italy, Lativa’s float-in music festival is the latest in a series of innovative socially distanced shows taking place worldwide.

Latvia’s government has reported 1,290 confirmed cases of Covid-19 and 32 related deaths. In May, The Baltic countries of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania opened their borders to one another, creating Europe’s first coronavirus “travel bubble” since nations began shutting their borders earlier this year.

 


This article forms part of IQ’s Covid-19 resource centre – a knowledge hub of essential guidance and updating resources for uncertain times.

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