A major Sydney music festival has been cancelled for the second year in a row, with the organisers slamming the government’s “mismanagement of the COVID-19 situation” in an angry statement.
Under the Southern Stars festival co-ordinators announced on Wednesday the concert series, set to feature Cheap Trick, Bush and Stone Temple Pilots around Australia in April and May, would be postponed until 2022 to “protect” patrons, artists and crews during the ongoing pandemic.
“We are as upset about this as you are!” the statement on its website began.
“Given the disappointingly slow rollout of the vaccine by the government, there is no confidence that we can keep all safe and proceed as planned at our festivals this May.
“The continuing mismanagement of the COVID-19 situation at all levels of government has led to numerous inconsistencies and ongoing broken promises by officials that ultimately affect the safety of our patrons, artists and our crews, both domestic and international.
“So much so that the situation presents too much to risk to go forward with the dates as planned at the end of April and into May 2021.”
The organisers said the decision to cancel was not one they took lightly, but public safety was the main motivation.
Under The Southern Stars promoter Andrew McManus urged the community to continue to “believe in us”.
“We get it … how many times can the Australian system force another postponement?” he said.
“So we are making the hard decision to reschedule Under The Southern Stars to the first quarter of 2022 and ask that all our valued supporters hold on to their tickets and in return we will be announcing some truly exciting additions to the line-up and festival circuit.
“We sincerely apologise for the situation and ask once again for our loyal patrons to #keepyourticket and stay tuned.
“Not only for new dates, but we are planning on making Under The Southern Stars bigger and better. It will absolutely be worth the wait.”
NSW Department of Health has been contacted for comment.