Confirmed: Woodstock 50 ‘Will Take Place as Planned’
“This confirms that Woodstock 50 is proceeding with the planning and production of the festival," Marc Kasowitz of Kasowitz Benson Torres LLP, who serves as legal counsel for Woodstock 50, says in a press release dated Tuesday night (April 30). "Dentsu has no legal right or ability to cancel it. All stakeholders, including the entertainers, should proceed with the understanding that the event will take place as planned and if they have any questions, they should reach out directly.”
Dentsu Aegis Network’s Amplifi Live was set to fund Woodstock 50 before announcing they were pulling the plug on Monday (April 29). According to Billboard, they cited concerns about site readiness, permitting and capacity. AEG and Live Nation both rejected pleas to try to secure an additional $20 million to save the event before Dentsu decided to pull out.
Despite that, Woodstock 50 organizers issued a statement late Monday saying they were moving forward with plans for the 50th anniversary of the iconic music festival.
“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," Woodstock 50 LLC said in a statement just hours after Dentsu announced its decision.
"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," the statement continues. "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.”
Woodstock 50 is set to run from Aug. 16-18 in Watkins Glen, N.Y. Sturgill Simpson and Margo Price are part of a lineup that boasts diverse musicians from across genres. Brandi Carlile, Anderson East and Miley Cyrus are also among the artists announced to perform. The event has been dogged by rumors of trouble since early on. The Black Keys canceled a planned headlining set, and tickets were delayed before going on sale.
The Woodstock Festival has a long history with planning going awry. The original festival in 1969 was swarmed by nearly half a million people when organizers had expected 50,000, and two previous anniversary concerts have been negatively impacted by severe weather conditions, including rain and mud.
Woodstock 50 LLC's statement does not clarify how organizers intend to secure additional funding for the event.