Woodstock 50 has been on a long, strange trip in less than a day after Dentsu Aegis Network, the festival’s main investor, announced it pulled its funding and said the festival was canceled.
However, despite this news, Woodstock 50’s organizers are pressing on and issued the following statement via Rolling Stone:
“We are committed to ensuring that the 50th Anniversary of Woodstock is marked with a festival deserving of its iconic name and place in American history and culture. Although our financial partner is withdrawing, we will of course be continuing with the planning of the festival and intend to bring on new partners. We would like to acknowledge the State of New York and Schuyler County for all of their hard work and support. The bottom line is, there is going to be a Woodstock 50th Anniversary Festival, as there must be, and it’s going to be a blast.”
Earlier today (April 29), Dentsu Aegis Network issued a statement to Billboard saying, “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. As difficult as it is, we believe this is the most prudent decision for all parties involved.”
Billboard also states that organizers were concerned the Watkins Glen International Speedway, the announced site of the festival, would not be able to accommodate the estimated 100,000 attendees.
Tickets for the festival were originally supposed to go on sale on April 22, but that date was pushed back because organizers didn’t secure a mass gathering permit from the New York State Department of Health for the Watkins Glen International Speedway. At the time of the postponed ticket sales, Woodstock co-founder/Woodstock 50 organizer Michael Lang called early buzz of the festival’s cancelation “just more rumors.”