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  • Writer's pictureJessica-Marie Monteiro-McDonald

Why are Australian Music Festivals being Cancelled?

Following the cancellation of This X That and Groovin the Moo (GTM), Splendour in The Grass (STIG) has just announced that the festival will not be moving forward in July of 2024. 

Both GTM and STIG were slammed on TikTok for producing lineups that were deemed unsatisfactory, leading to a decrease in ticket sales and attendees waiting on refunds for their favourite festivals. 

A plethora of Australian music festivals have been cancelled in the last 6 months. Now, some are blaming it on objectively “bad” lineups and the cost of living, which obviously holds some weight in the current cost of living crisis. But I think there are other factors involved. 

Social media has given us an idea of what festivals should be and neglects the fact they were created to celebrate and showcase music. GTM was filled with international artists such as Jet and The Kooks and STIG was stacked with home grown Aussie artists and bands, from Kylie Minogue and G-FLIP to bands breaking out on the scene like Old Mervs and Rum Jungle. 

To me, what is fueling discontentment of committing to these festivals is the idea that people want lineups to be curated for trends. Obviously there has been a decrease in the amount of high profile artists who played at SITG a few years back, but should it really stop us experiencing and exploring these events? Of course bands are going to feature on multiple lineups but what's the use in whining if you’re going to complain at every possible outcome?

Music festivals are about coming together to enjoy community, music and experience a taste of something new and this growing disinterest poses a real threat to our homegrown artists. 

“Live gigs are the primary source of income for most artists: For a considerable proportion of respondents, playing live music makes up most of their earned income. 57.9% of that income, in fact.”

© RadioInfo Australia

One of the BIGGEST festivals just called it quits, of course you don't HAVE to care about this, but it is a major concern for the future of live music in Australia. In the meantime go support your local artists and have a boogie.

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