The primary funding partner of the planned Woodstock 50th anniversary festival have announced the cancellation of the festival - however, there's some conflicting statements from the festival's organisers as to whether the event is truly in the can or not.
The festival, due to be held from August 16-18 in Watkins Glen, New York, was intended to celebrate Woodstock's cultural legacy and 50-year milestone of the famous 1969 festival.
Woodstock 50's primary investors, the Dentsu Aegis Network, said they “don’t believe the production of the festival can be executed as an event worthy of the Woodstock brand name” and announced its cancellation.
The full statement from the Denstu Aegis Network reads:
“It’s a dream for agencies to work with iconic brands and to be associated with meaningful movements. We have a strong history of producing experiences that bring people together around common interests and causes which is why we chose to be a part of the Woodstock 50th Anniversary Festival.
But despite our tremendous investment of time, effort and commitment, we don’t believe the production of the festival can be executed as an event worthy of the Woodstock brand name while also ensuring the health and safety of the artists, partners and attendees.
As a result and after careful consideration, Dentsu Aegis Network’s Amplifi Live, a partner of Woodstock 50, has decided to cancel the festival,” the statement continues. “As difficult as it is, we believe this is the most prudent decision for all parties involved.”
Despite the statement, the organisers of the Woodstock 50 festival have denied the festivals cancellation, and have said in a statement to the Poughkeepsie Journal that "legal remedy will (be) sought."
Michael Lang, the promoter of Woodstock 50 and one of the lead organisers of the 1969 festival, has also told The New York Times that Dentsu “do not have the right to unilaterally cancel the festival”. Lang also said he was "caught by surprise" by Dentsu's announcement, and has voiced his intention to secure another financial backer for the festival, explaining that all of the acts have already been paid in full.
There had previously been doubts about the festival, due to ticket sales being postponed and The Black Keys deciding to pull out of their slot due to a scheduling conflict.
The festival's line-up features the likes of The Killers, Santana and The Raconteurs sharing a stage with Miley Cyrus, Jay-Z and Halsey.
Revisit the full lineup for Woodstock 50 here.