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Tomorrowland discusses approach to recouping €25m losses

Tomorrowland’s chief has discussed the festival’s attempts to recoup some of the €25 million it lost between 2020 and 2021.

As previously announced, the Belgian festival was granted a permit for a third festival weekend this year to “cushion the financial hangover” from six cancelled festival weekends, including four in Belgium (Tomorrowland 2020 and 2021) and two in France (Tomorrowland Winter 2020 and 2021).

This year’s extended edition will see a record 600,000 people descend on De Schorre park, Boom, between 15–17, 22–24 and 29–31 July.

The sold-out third weekend was priced 5% higher at €114.50 per day or €310 for the weekend, to help compensate for high inflation in Europe.

In addition to the extra weekend, Tomorrowland founder Michiel Beers successfully appealed to the festival’s headliners to discount their 2019-level fees by 10%.

Tomorrowland founder Michiel Beers successfully appealed to the festival’s headliners to discount their 2019-level fees by 10%

According to the handful of headliners Billboard spoke to, it wasn’t a tough sell. “We’re all sticking together because basically we’re kind of lost without each other in this game,” said Danish techno DJ Kölsch.

The extra weekend and lower artist fees won’t be enough, however, to make the company profitable again, according to Tomorrowland founder Michiel Beers.

“It’s an important part of a solution of being healthy again,” he says. “Does it cover a two-year loss? No.” What’s more, the festival must return to its two-weekend format from next year onwards.

In, perhaps, another bid to recoup losses, Tomorrowland teamed up with another of Belgium’s biggest festival organisers, Rock Werchter, for a new two-day festival in Brussels.

Core festival debuted between 27–28 May in Osseghem Park, with up to 25,000 visitors per day enjoying sets from the likes of Action Bronson, Caribou, Celeste, Cellini, DJ Harvey and Jamie xx.

This year also saw the return of Tomorrowland Winter at the Alpe d’Huez ski area between 19–26 March 2022. The festival’s other activities include a partnership with leading global cryptocurrency exchange FTX Europe and a link-up with Coca-Cola.

 


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Coca-Cola reveals Tomorrowland partnership

Coca-Cola has confirmed the first of a series of festival partnerships by announcing a link-up with Tomorrowland.

The marquee Belgium edition of Tomorrowland in Boom, Antwerp, is expanding to three weekends rather than its usual two from 15-31 July. Tickets sold out just 30 minutes after going on sale.

Alan Walker, Alesso, Armin van Buuren, Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike, Eric Prydz presents HOLO, Fisher, Kungs, Lost Frequencies, Major Lazer Soundsystem, Marshmello, Martin Garrix, Netsky, Paul Kalkbrenner are among confirmed acts.

A Coca-Cola consumer promotion will run across Europe, offering winners immersive in-person brand experiences on the festival area and backstage and behind the scenes access. The brand will also present live broadcasts from the festival and “unique” artist access for home viewers.

“We know that festivals are about more than just music”

“Passion fuels everything we do at Coca-Cola, and nothing gets people moving, celebrating, and enjoying life like live music does,” says Thomas Oth, Coca-Cola country director, Belgium.

“Also, we know that festivals are about more than just music. They’re about breaking conventions and opening ourselves up to the stories and experiences we’ve missed out on over the past two years.”

Michael Willeke, integrated marketing experience director, Europe, adds: “Coca-Cola has a rich heritage in music and has been present at some of the most iconic moments in live music history, just like our brand it brings people together. It is a pleasure to bring our summer of music to our audiences once again this year, starting with Tomorrowland.”

Earlier this week, Tomorrowland revealed it is set to open Terra Solis, a new desert destination in Dubai, in September. Terra Solis is billed as providing music and entertainment with “a fun party atmosphere, and an exceptional food and beverage offering”.

 


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Tomorrowland partners with global crypto exchange

Belgium’s biggest festival Tomorrowland is partnering with leading global cryptocurrency exchange FTX Europe to “make the leap into web3 and NFTs”.

According to Tomorrowland, the partnership will explore a variety of applications of Web3 and blockchain technology including NFTs for art, music, and ticketing, events in the metaverse, and cryptocurrency payments.

The partnership will kick off with an activation called The Quest by FTX, which will allow Tomorrowland Winter festival attendees to collect the first 1,500 NFTs of a 6,500 collection and earn a unique experience.

There will be five locations hidden throughout the mountains that festivalgoers will have to find and then scan their event bracelet for entry, with 250 winners selected each day of Tomorrowland Winter. These tickets entitle 1,500 attendees access to exclusive concerts held at a secret location over three nights.

“The evolution to web3 opens a lot of possibilities for our endless imagination”

Tomorrowland Winter will take place in the Alpe d’Huez ski area between 19–26 March 2022.

Michiel Beers, founder of Tomorrowland, says: “Since day one it’s within the DNA of Tomorrowland to never stop pushing the boundaries of creativity and innovation, to create the most unique experiences and important moments for our global community, The People of Tomorrow. The evolution to web3 opens a lot of possibilities for our endless imagination and also the opportunity to tighten the bonds of our community in the coming years.”

Some 600,000 visitors are expected at this year’s Tomorrowland in Belgium, after tickets completely sold out just 30 minutes after the on-sale.

The marquee festival will take place in De Schorre park in Boom, Antwerp, during three weekends rather than its usual two.

The 16th edition of the Belgian festival will take place this year from 15–17 July, 22–24 July and 29–31 July and will feature more than 700 different artists spread over fourteen stages.

 


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Tomorrowland shifts 600,000 passes in 30 minutes

Some 600,000 visitors are expected at this year’s Tomorrowland in Belgium, after tickets completely sold out just 30 minutes after the on-sale.

The marquee festival will take place in De Schorre park in Boom, Antwerp, during three weekends rather than its usual two.

The organisers previously said that a third weekend would help “cushion the financial hangover” from six cancelled festival weekends, including four in Belgium (Tomorrowland 2020 and 2021) and two in France (Tomorrowland Winter 2020 and 2021).

“We are very happy to welcome 600,000 festivalgoers at Tomorrowland in Belgium this summer,” says Tomorrowland spokeswoman Debby Wilmsen. “It is great to see that people [stayed] positive in those challenging years and we are looking forward to share love, music and friendship soon.”

“It is great to see that people [stayed] positive in those challenging years and we are looking forward to share love”

The 16th edition of the Belgian festival will take place this year from 15–17 July, 22–24 July and 29–31 July and will feature more than 700 different artists spread over fourteen stages.

Alan Walker, Alesso, Armin van Buuren, Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike, Eric Prydz presents HOLO, Fisher, Kungs, Lost Frequencies, Major Lazer Soundsystem, Marshmello, Martin Garrix, Netsky, Paul Kalkbrenner are among the confirmed acts.

In addition to the flagship festival, Tomorrowland is also busy preparing for two weekends of Tomorrowland Winter in the Alpe d’Huez ski area between 19–26 March 2022.

The festival is also teaming up with another of Belgium’s biggest festival organisers, Rock Werchter, for a new two-day festival in Brussels.

Core festival will debut between 27–28 May this year in Osseghem Park, with up to 25,000 visitors per day.

Action Bronson, Caribou, Celeste, Cellini, The Blaze, DJ Harvey, Jamie xx, Meute, Mura Masa, Nina Kraviz, Paul Kalkbrenner, Ross From Friends and Sylvie Kreusch are among the confirmed artists.

 


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Tomorrowland, Rock Werchter launch new fest

Belgium festival behemoths Tomorrowland and Rock Werchter have joined forces to launch a new two-day festival in Brussels.

Core festival will debut between 27–28 May this year in Osseghem Park, a picturesque nature area in the Belgian capital.

The organisers say the boutique festival will feature “a very eclectic” line-up (yet to be announced) that will “break the boundaries between quality indie, hip hop, electronica, hyper pop and alternative dance”.

The four-stage event will aim to attract 25,000 visitors per day including domestic and international festivalgoers.

Core‘s lineup will be revealed soon and the presale for tickets (which start at €67 for one-day admission) will start on 23 February.

“Tomorrowland and Rock Werchter have been working together on several smaller events i.e. the Garden of Madness shows by Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike at the Antwerp Sportpaleis, the KNTXT event in Ghent, Swedish House Mafia at the Antwerp Sportpaleis,” Rock Werchter’s Yo Van Saet tells IQ.

“Our ideas are mostly complementary, the ambition of both our teams are high and like-minded. And so there was this new idea, becoming now a brand-new event. We are uniting to create this original and refreshing festival in one of Brussels’ most beautiful green parks. Expertise and knowledge are shared. Our teams are working together closely on this new festival, with great passion. It’s new, it’s fresh. It’s nothing like Rock Werchter, nor Tomorrowland.”

“Two of the most important players in the world of music, are coming to Brussels with this new concept”

Philippe Close, mayor of the city of Brussels, says: “We are very proud that Tomorrowland and Rock Werchter, two of the most important players in the world of music, are coming to Brussels with this new concept. A total experience of music, art and nature. Brussels celebrates and thus enables the event, cultural and hotel industry to breathe again.”

Rock Werchter (cap. 88,000), promoted by Herman Schueremans and Live Nation Belgium, is the country’s largest festival.

The marquee event is due to return between 30 June and 3 July this year for the first time since 2019.

Tomorrowland (70,000), meanwhile, will return to Boom from 22 July to 24 July and from 29 July to 31 July.

In addition to the flagship festival, Tomorrowland is also busy preparing for two weekends of Tomorrowland Winter in the Alpe d’Huez ski area between 19–26 March 2022.

The brand has had to cancel six festival weekends due to the pandemic, including four in Belgium (Tomorrowland 2020 and 2021) and two in France (Tomorrowland Winter 2020 and 2021).

 


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Tomorrowland gets green light for third weekend

Tomorrowland has been granted a permit for a third festival weekend in 2022, which will help to recoup lost revenue from two fallow years.

The organisers previously said that a third weekend would help “cushion the financial hangover” from six cancelled festival weekends, including four in Belgium (Tomorrowland 2020 and 2021) and two in France (Tomorrowland Winter 2020 and 2021).

It has now been confirmed that the province of Antwerp, the region in which the 70,000-capacity festival has taken place since 2005, has granted the organisers permission to hold three separate weekends (instead of two) over the course of next summer.

“We are thrilled,” a festival spokesperson told The Brussels Times. “We can now go ahead with three weekends which will all be in July. These will have the same preparations as if we were doing just two weekends but will allow us to offer more variety.”

“These [weekends] will have the same preparations as if we were doing just two but will allow us to offer more variety”

The decision comes after discussions with local residents and authorities, who have added some conditions – all of which the organisers have accepted.

An earlier closing time will be imposed on some of the parties within the campsites in order to reduce noise after hours. The use of fireworks will also be limited, and the festival will also not use helicopters to transport artists and camera crews.

In addition to the flagship festival, Tomorrowland is also busy preparing for two weekends of Tomorrowland Winter in the Alpe d’Huez ski area between 19–26 March 2022.

The first names for the festival have been announced today (16 September), with Adriatique, Afrojack, Armin van Buuren, Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike, Kungs, Lost Frequencies, Martin Solveig, Ofenbach, Paul Kalkbrenner, Quintino and Yves V all set to perform.

 


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Tomorrowland eyes third festival weekend for 2022

The organisers of marquee Belgian festival Tomorrowland have officially submitted an application for a third festival weekend in 2022 “out of economic necessity”.

According to organisers, the third weekend would help compensate for six cancelled festival weekends, including four in Belgium (Tomorrowland 2020 and 2021) and two in France (Tomorrowland Winter 2020 and 2021).

According to Het Laatste Nieuws, the two consecutive cancellations of the Belgian festival alone caused a financial blow of “no less than €25 million”.

“We really have to do this to cushion the financial hangover,” Tomorrowland spokesperson Debby Wilmsen told the Belgian newspaper. “Before Covid, there were no plans to start organising three weekends.”

In order for the one-off extra weekend to go ahead, permission is required from the Antwerp region, as well as the municipalities of Boom and Rumst, where the 70,000-capacity festival has taken place since 2005.

“We really have to do this to cushion the financial hangover”

Tomorrowland has taken place across two weekends since the tenth anniversary

On the tenth anniversary of Tomorrowland, two festival weekends were held for the first time instead of one. It was then the intention to do this only in jubilee years, every five editions, but organisers got a permit to hold the festival two weekends a year.

A third weekend would be held one week before the dates already announced, on Friday 15, Saturday 16 and Sunday 17 July 2022.

A public inquiry on the application will be open until Tuesday 24 October and public objections can be made.

A decision will be made no later than 13 January. As it stands, the proposed weekend is likely to get the backing of Antwerp, Boom and Rumst, who have all indicated that they are not opposed.

In the meantime, Tomorrowland is busy preparing for two weekends of Tomorrowland Winter in the Alpe d’Huez ski area in March 2022.

Tomorrowland isn’t the only festival extending its duration for 2022 – Spain’s Primavera, Croatia’s InMusic and Germany’s Summer Breeze are all expanding next year to celebrate anniversaries.

 


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Tomorrowland doubles up on festivals for 2022

Following a successful debut in 2019, Tomorrowland has announced the return of its winter edition for next March.

Tomorrowland Winter will take place at the Alpe d’Huez ski resort in the French Alps between 19–26 March 2022.

The first names for the festival have been announced today (16 September), with Adriatique, Afrojack, Armin van Buuren, Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike, Kungs, Lost Frequencies, Martin Solveig, Ofenbach, Paul Kalkbrenner, Quintino and Yves V all set to perform.

Tickets for the winter edition will go on sale on Saturday (18 September). Find out more information about the festival here.

Tomorrowland is also set to bring back its annual flagship festival next year, following two consecutive cancellations due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The 70,000-capacity electronic dance festival will take place from 22–24 and 29–31 July 2022 at its usual location in Boom, Belgium. The line-up for the festival is yet to be announced.

 


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Tomorrowland launches record label

Tomorrowland, the world’s biggest dance music festival, has launched Tomorrowland Music, a new record label which will be distributed worldwide through Virgin Music Label & Artist Services, a division of Universal Music Group (UMG).

The Berlin-based label will be led Alexander Neipp, Daniel Schmidt and Magnus Textor (Virgin Records) and Tina Adams (Virgin Music Label & Artist Services). Its first release, out tomorrow (27 August), will be ‘You Got the Love’ by Never Sleeps, a new project by Afrojack and Chico Rose.

Michiel Beers, CEO and founder of Tomorrowland, says: “Creativity is something that can’t be stopped at Tomorrowland. I’m very proud of how resilient our team was to find new ways of bringing Tomorrowland into the reality of the last period. We have taken the extra time to focus on projects that were on our list for a long time and one of them was definitely launching our own Tomorrowland Music label.

“Michel Van Buyten, music manager of Tomorrowland Music, will work closely together with artists to help create strong stories around their releases. With the combined forces of our dedicated label team, Tomorrowland Media House, and the different Virgin Music teams worldwide, our aim is to introduce fans in every corner of the world to the most exciting projects in electronic music.”

Tomorrowland, which has been held in Boom, Belgium, since 2005, was cancelled in 2021 for a second year running after local authorities pulled its permit, citing concerns over Covid-19.

“I’m confident the new label is going to be a special place and a great home for artists”

A digital festival, Tomorrowland: Around the World, took place on 16 and 17 July, featuring music from Armin van Buuren, Nicky Romero and Charlotte de Witte.

Frank Briegmann, chairman and CEO of Universal Music Central Europe, comments: “Over the past 15 years Tomorrowland has built a reputation as one of the world’s leading festivals and electronic music brands by consistently expanding and evolving their relationship with music fans. Today, Tomorrowland is one of Europe’s most innovative music brands, respected by artists and loved by the millions of people who have attended their events around the world.

“We are delighted to have partnered with them to support the launch of their new label venture and to have created a uniquely flexible model utilising our expert and proven teams at Virgin Records Germany, Virgin Music Label & Artist Services teams around the world, and other flagship UMG labels worldwide to help drive success and create global hits for Tomorrowland. We look forward to a very successful partnership together, and to further enhancing our ability to provide partners, labels and artists with new and innovative ways to achieve global success.”

“Joining forces with Tomorrowland Music feels like love at first sight,” adds Magnus Textor, head of A&R for Virgin Records Germany. “It’s great to see that we share the same passion for electronic music and artists. Everyone who has ever been to Tomorrowland or even just seen one of their event films has experienced their dedication. Therefore, I’m confident the new label is going to be a special place and a great home for artists.”

 


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Belgium PM: Indoor events could return in autumn

Large indoor events should be able to take place in Belgium this September, provided residents are “motivated” to get vaccinated, according to prime minister Alexander De Croo.

Belgium’s vaccination campaign has been relatively successful so far, with almost 70% of the total population having received one jab and more than 50% receiving two doses, according to Our World in Data.

“It remains a bit uncertain, but if you look at how fast our vaccination rollout is going, then by the beginning of September, those who should be fully vaccinated will be and so far, there is no reason to believe that the protection would not be good, so in autumn, those kinds of concerts and events where you are standing close to other people should be possible,” De Croo told Studio Brussels.

The statement follows the announcement that Pukkelpop – the last remaining major international music festival in Belgium following the cancellation last month of Tomorrowland – will not take place again this year.

“Multi-day festivals are more difficult, especially if you have a young audience [who] have not yet been fully vaccinated”

The cancellation was a result of new government regulations that would have required the festival to almost triple its on-site testing capacity with less than a month to go until gates open.

“Multi-day festivals are more difficult, especially if you have a young audience. Many 16-year-olds, for example, have not yet been fully vaccinated,” De Croo said.

The full reopening of Belgium’s live music sector will be facilitated by the Covid Safe Ticket (CTS), which was announced last week.

The domestic health pass, which will certify the Covid-19 status of attendees to major entertainment and sports events, will apply to outdoor events from 13 August and indoor events from 1 September.

The CTS eliminates the need for social distancing, promoters must implement a crowd management plan, as well as ensuring adequate ventilation (in the case of indoor shows) which is measured by a CO2 meter, according to the Belgian government.

 


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