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ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT

Coachella Has Completely Cancelled Its 2020 Festival

The huge Californian music festival will now return in April 2021.
By Sarah Ward
June 12, 2020
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By Sarah Ward
June 12, 2020
  shares

First, Coachella excited music fans worldwide with its 2020 lineup, with Travis Scott, Frank Ocean and Rage Against the Machine topping the bill. Then, when COVID-19 started having an impact on gigs around the globe — and travel to gigs, too — the huge Californian fest postponed this year's event from April to October. Now, in a move that's hardly surprising, it's scrapping 2020's festival altogether. Instead, it'll aim to return in 2021 in its regular April time slot.

Revealing the news, fest organisers announced that "Under the continuing health guidance of the County of Riverside, Coachella and Stagecoach 2020 will not take place this October as previously rescheduled". Just what'll happen with Coachella's much-anticipated 2020 lineup — and whether Scott, Ocean and RATM will feature next year — is yet to be advised, with the festival saying, "we look forward to sharing our new lineups and more information."

The cancellation comes after Coachella's parent company, Anschutz Entertainment Group (AEG), told staff earlier this week that it'd be cutting back its workforce, including layoffs, furloughs and pay cuts, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Coachella ticketholders will be able to use their passes for the 2021 festival and the company will be emailing information about refunds by Monday, June 15.

Fallout from the coronavirus on this scale has been predicted for the music industry for months, with some experts forecasting that concerts, festivals and international touring won't return to normal until late 2021. Just this week, Australia's own Splendour in the Grass also canned its 2020 fest, after earlier announcing a move to October, just as Coachella had. Splendour will instead celebrate its 20th-anniversary event in July 2021.

Of course, since Australia and New Zealand's international borders are currently firmly shut — and, if they reopen anytime soon, they only look likely to open to each other as part of an Australian–New Zealand travel bubble — music lovers from Down Under weren't going to be able to attend this year's Coachella anyway. If you had been preparing to to watch the always-popular livestream across the weekends of October 9–11 and 16–18, though, you'll need to cancel your plans.

Or, you can check out the free YouTube documentary Coachella: 20 Years in the Desert, which does an entertaining — albeit highly official, and therefore highly celebratory — job of exploring the fest's origins, growth and success. The doco also includes some killer performance footage, highlighting performers who've graced the Indio stage over the past two decade, such as Jane's Addiction, Bjork, Daft Punk, Madonna, Amy Winehouse, Beyonce and Prince, plus Tupac in hologram form.

Coachella will no longer take place in 2020, and is expected to return from April 9–11 and April 16–18, 2021. For further information, visit coachella.com.

Published on June 12, 2020 by Sarah Ward

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