Sat. Apr 13th, 2024

Australia’s Splendour in the Grass 2024 Festival Is Canceled

By Michael Mar 27, 2024

The 2024 edition of Splendour in the Grass won’t go ahead.

“With a heavy heart,” reads a statement from organizers, issued late Wednesday (March 27), “we’re announcing the cancellation of Splendour in the Grass 2024, originally scheduled from Friday 19 July to Sunday 21 July in Ngarindjin / North Byron Parklands.”

The surprise announcement comes less than a week after tickets to the three-day camping fest went on sale to the general public.

As previously reported, Splendour had booked a healthy lineup featuring Kylie Minogue, Future and Arcade Fire as headliners. Also on the bill for the now-scrapped 2024 fest was Girl In Red, Yeat, Turnstile, G Flip, The Last Dinner Party, Tash Sultana, Fontaines D.C. and many more.

“We know there were many fans excited for this year’s line-up and all the great artists planning to join us, but due to unexpected events we’ll be taking the year off,” the statement continues.

Established in 2001 and held each year in Byron Bay, a picturesque beach town on the most easterly tip of Australia, Splendour is a destination event, the most popular mid-winter camping fest in these parts.

Splendour, once the hottest ticket on the festivals calendar, has endured a particularly tough run, first with the pandemic, which saw the announced, then shelved several times during the pandemic. Then, in 2022, extreme weather conditions wrecked the first day of Splendour 2022, contributing to softer-than-usual ticket sales for the 2023 edition.

“We’re heartbroken to be missing a year especially after more than two decades in operation,” reads a joint statement from Jessica Ducrou and Paul Piticco, co-CEOs of Secret Sounds and founders of Splendour. “This festival has always been a huge community effort, and we’d like to thank everyone for their support and overall faith. We hope to be back in the future.”

Tickets for Splendour 2024 went on sale from Thursday, March 21 via, with the SITG members pre-sale opening March 14. Single day tickets were priced at A$179 (plus fees), three-day tickets are $399 (plus fees), camping tickets cost $159 (plus fees) and the premium “VIP Village VIP” three-day ticket is A$599 (plus fees). 

Ticket holders will be refunded automatically.

Despite the setback, Splendour will return, according to Secret Sounds, an affiliate of Live Nation, which produces the annual event. “We thank you for your understanding,” reads the statement, “and will be working hard to be back in future years.”

As news filtered into the live music community, the response was like that of a death in the family.

“We are devastated by the news of Splendour’s cancellation,” reads a statement from Mitch Wilson, managing director, Australian Festival Association. “The Australian music festival industry is currently facing a crisis, and the flow-on effects will be felt across the local communities, suppliers and contractors that sustain our festivals and rely on them to support their livelihoods.”

According to the AFA, costs for staging a festival are up 30-40% across the board, affordable insurance is difficult to obtain, margins are tight. “We need government at the table to help us through this period and assist in stabilizing our industry to sustainable levels. This needs a national approach,” Wilson continues.

Politicians are listening. Minister for music John Graham has issued a lifeline on behalf of the government of New South Wales. “The cancellation of Splendour in the Grass is devastating news,” he comments. “The festival industry is under extreme pressure, and I am deeply worried about the health of the festival scene here in NSW. The NSW government offered financial support to help the event proceed this year. We will continue to work with them and hope to see them return next year.”

By Michael

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