Woodstock 50 poses “significant challenge” to officials ahead of event
The officials appear to be worried.July 3, 2019
After facing the loss of their venue, Woodstock 50 was forced to seek out a new location for their event. A couple of days ago it was revealed that the festival applied for a new venue with a decreased capacity size.
Now, the organizers have provided yet another update about the event, and it sounds troublesome.
A key official says that hosting the festival on short notice could “post a significant challenge.”
The festival is set to take place in Vernon Downs in Oneida County at the racetrack. However, officials worry that the short time span will hinder the festival.
Oneida County Executive Anthony J Picente, Jr. released a statement in which he expressed concerns regarding the music festival honoring Woodstock’s 50th anniversary.
“With the event just a little over a month away, we have been asked to prepare in just days what has failed to get done in over a year of negotiations and preparations at the previous location,” Picente’s statement said. “….With such a short time frame the logistical hurdles to ensure the public health and safety of the concertgoers and the surrounding community could pose a significant challenge.”
Recently, we learned of the venue change for the event that takes place Aug. 16-18
The original site was slated to hold 150,000 attendees. The new location, according to Watson, has a proposed capacity of 45,000-50,000.
Now, sources tell Billboard that the artists slated to play the festival have yet to be alerted of the potential venue change.
Many of the artists’ contracts were set up through Dentsu, the original investor that pulled from the event April 29.
Dentsu paid over $32 million in artist fees and production costs before pulling from the event.
The company allegedly reached out to three of the big agencies representing the artists playing Woodstock. Those being CAA, Paradigm and WME. They stated they plan to honor their contracts and not ask for any of the money back.
An order from a NY judge prevents Dentsu from canceling Woodstock 50, but executives have sent Peck multiple letters attempting to assert control over the event.
This order also does not allow Dentsu to tell artists not to play the festival, which puts everyone in an awkward spot.
Despite the numerous roadblocks regarding the festival, Lang is refusing to give up on the event. This puts agents and managers of the artists in a weird situation, not wanting to jeopardize the money their clients have already been paid.
However, sources tell Billboard that contractually, the artists are legally covered to pull from the event. Their contracts list the venue as Watkins Glenn, not somewhere two hours away.
“Each artist will have to make a decision about whether this is something they want to take on now that so much has changed,” one source tells Billboard. “Often, the artist will feel compelled to play because they don’t want to disappoint their fans, but in the case of Woodstock 50, no one has bought tickets yet, so there’s not really anyone to disappoint.”
Could a loss of artists on the lineup be the next big hurdle for Woodstock 50? We may not have to wait too much longer to find out.
“If this isn’t settled by Monday, I think you’ll see a few agents say that Woodstock 50 is in breach of contract and artists will start to pull out,” one source says.
Do you think Woodstock will still continue as planned? Sound off in the comments below!
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