In less than four months, the highly anticipated three-day music extravaganza Woodstock 50 will take place in Watkins Glen, N.Y. — or will it?
Things are currently looking rocky for the organizers of the commemorative festival, specifically its founder and original Woodstock 1969 co-founder Michael Lang, as not a single ticket has been bought. But there’s a reason behind that.
Tickets for Woodstock 50 were set to go on sale last Monday, however the on-sale date has been pushed back for undisclosed reasons.
“There is currently a hold on the Woodstock 50 on-sale date,” read an email distributed to various booking agents and managers, according to Billboard. “We are waiting on an official press statement from Woodstock 50 regarding updated ticket pricing and overall festival information.”
Lang, 74, did his best to ensure fans that the show will go on, claiming on Friday that the heavily speculated cancellation of Woodstock 50 is just “more rumours.”
While management teams were reportedly notified of the setback, none of the actual concertgoers or avid music lovers planning to attend the festival have received any notice regarding tickets.
Tim O’Hearn, administrator of Schuyler County (which includes Watkins Glen), told Pitchfork that the festival is awaiting approval on a mass gathering permit by the New York Department of Health (DOH).
“The health department is reviewing to determine if a conditional permit may be issued that would allow for ticket sales to commence,” he said.
Watkins Glen holds nearly 100,000 people and is known for being an often troublesome venue that is easily affected by weather. Only last year, Phish’s three-day Curveball festival was cancelled, as it was not approved by the DOH.
Unfortunately, the organizers for this year’s Woodstock were unable to secure the festival’s original site in Bethel Woods, N.Y., as an opposing festival — Bethel Woods Music and Culture Festival — will take place on the exact same weekend.
With a stacked lineup set for the Aug. 16-18 weekend and a now-reduced venue capacity, fans are getting increasingly anxious about their chances to get tickets for the 50th anniversary special.
Already, a number of bands have pulled out of the long-awaited festival, including one of its main acts, The Black Keys, who put the decision down to “scheduling conflicts” in a statement earlier this month.
Thanks to Lang’s company, Woodstock Ventures, Woodstock has celebrated a number of anniversaries since 1969. Special weekend-long festivals have run in 1979, 1989, 1994 and 1999.
In the wake of Woodstock 50 ticket sales being postponed, social media users have expressed a mixed bag of emotions about the upcoming festival.
Some users have already purchased illegitimate tickets for hundreds upon hundreds of dollars through secondary ticket sites and scalpers.
Many are speculating that the festival may be cancelled entirely, while others are calling it “Fyre Festival Part 2.”
As of this writing, Lang has not yet revealed any additional information regarding ticket sales.
The official Woodstock 50 lineup can be found here.