Is the festival party over?

Written by Chris Smith

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Splendour in the Grass at Woodford earlier this year

Music festivals have become staple of the Australian summer. But with a tough economy is 2011 going to be a bummer summer for festival promoters?

As the Parklife music festival begins to tour the country at the end of the month, the Australian summer festival scene is about to kick off.

But with a year that has saw Splendour in the Grass fail  to sell out and Good Vibrations promoters postponing their festival to next year, this summer could be shaping up to be a tough year for festival promoters.

The head Good Vibrations promoter Justin Hemmes blamed a competitive market for their festival being postponed for a year.

“It’s a very competitive market. There’s one hundred and one festivals on and there’s a lot of choice. Prices were very high for acts. There was a bidding war going on for acts which pushes the prices up. Prices are inflated, demand is down,” Justin Hemmes told inthemix.

Live music addicts are now spoiled for choice are able to sit back and choice pick which festivals they want to attend.

“It’s mainly about the line-up for me, if I decide to by a ticket or not,” said 22-year-old James Southey of Brisbane. “And with so many festivals it comes down to the ones with the acts I really want to see.”

Charles Arcodia who teaches Event Management at the University of Queensland believes that established festivals should still do well over the summer.

“I think it is like any business at the end of the day, the festival which managed to maintain success and profitability will last longer. The ones who come in later perhaps or can’t manage the size to maintain a profit will have to go.”

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