Woodstock to return for 50th anniversary celebration
The Woodstock Music & Arts Fair is returning 50 years after the iconic concert series first kicked off.
The anniversary celebration, which will be held over three days from Aug. 16-18 in Watkins Glen, N.Y. is being organized by festival co-founder Michael Lang.
“It’s time to put the speculation to rest and officially announce that Woodstock 50 is happening,” Lang said in a statement. “The original festival in ‘69 was a reaction by the youth of the time to the causes we felt compelled to fight for — civil rights, women’s rights, and the antiwar movement, and it gave way to our mission to share peace, love, and music. Today, we’re experiencing similar disconnects in our country, and one thing we’ve learned is that music has the power to bring people together. So, it’s time to bring the Woodstock spirit back, get involved, and make our voices heard.”
The last Woodstock festival took place in 1999. That event was famously marred by reports of mismanagement, unsanitary conditions, and sexual assault. The issues mounted when candles handed out during the final set featuring the Red Hot Chilli Peppers led a fire (and subsequent riot) to break out. In the aftermath, 44 arrests were made while 10,000 attendees sought medical treatment.
Though an official lineup has yet to be announced, Lang reveals the acts set to take the stage will be “primarily contemporary talent, but the legacy acts will be represented and honored.” The festival’s setup will consist of three main stages and will feature over 60 performers across rock, hip-hop, pop, and country. A limited number of discounted pre-sale tickets will be available to college students ages 18-25 at the end of January, with general on-sale information will be announced over the coming weeks.
The showcase will coincide with another Woodstock commemoration in Bethel Woods, N.Y., where the event debuted in 1969. Held during the same weekend, it will feature a soon-to-be announced lineup of live music performances and TED-style talks “from leading futurists and retro-tech experts” (sure, why not?).
Among those featured in Woodstock’s original lineup were Jimi Hendrix, the Who, Janis Joplin, and the Band.