A significant precedent was set yesterday in Miami with the cancellation of Ultra Music Festival. The decision to cancel one of the biggest festivals in the United States was made just a day after the call to cancel Ultra in Abu Dhabi. Just this morning, Tomorrowland Winter was also cancelled. The event was set to take place in Alpe d’Huez, France. Tomorrowland issued an official statement that claimed the French government is enforcing cancellation of all major events.
There’s no doubt that the cities and states that are coordinating these decisions are trying to look out for the safety and well-being of their citizens. No government or company wants to feel liable for the spread of COVID-19. These decisions, however, will be impossible to ignore. With California’s Gov. Newsom declaring a state of emergency in California yesterday, there could be a response from Coachella, which is coming up soon (April 10).
While many in the United States are still under the impression that this outbreak can be contained, the CDC itself has stated otherwise: “It’s not so much a question of if this will happen anymore but rather more a question of exactly when this will happen.” Some people have entered full-on panic mode because of this, but overall fail to realize that this coronavirus is not nearly as deadly as your run-of-the-mill influenza. To offer a brief comparison, at the time of this publishing this article, over 12,000 people have died in the United States alone from the flu in the last four months. COVID-19 has taken a little over 3,000 deaths since its discovery back in December.
Of the 95,000+ cases that have been reported, almost 60,000 have recovered.
Regardless of how deadly the coronavirus actually is, any type of event that involves the gathering of large amounts of people will be impacted. At this moment, there are probably hundreds, if not thousands of event coordinators who are considering a plan of action.
The smaller scale boutique festivals that are not expecting international travel are much less at risk of being cancelled.
It’s hard to put yourself in the shoes of government officials and festival owners who are making these decisions. It’s fair to say that anyone would want to avoid being blamed for the spread of the coronavirus. Ultra and the city of Miami came to resolution to effectively cancel their event for 2020, and we can’t blame them for it. We’ll wait and see what the others do, but we’re expecting nearly every large scale festival to be cancelled this year. We will be adding updates to this post as more festivals announce their plans.
UPDATE: BUKU Music + Arts Festival has confirmed that they’re festival will be taking place.
UPDATE: Movement Festival has confirmed that they’re festival will be taking place.
Maybe Medasin has the right idea…
So hear me out, once corona virus has infected most of the U.S. population, we should start having corona exclusive festivals where in order to attend you must HAVE coronavirus, so that you won’t be spreading it to the uninfected. Otherwise shit boutta get canceled left & right
— medasin (@MedasinMusic) March 5, 2020