The festival bubble claims a victim: Diversity Valencia cancels at the last minute

The festival bubble claims a victim: Diversity Valencia cancels at the last minute

It was one of the new festivals that sprung up in 2022 in the heat of the pandemic, a year when musical events multiplied to make up for lost time. Diversity Valéncia had positioned itself in early January as one of the most ambitious debutants and had booked the City of Arts and Sciences to be held on July 21, 22 and 23. But it ended up clicking.

Metallica t-shirts and boat shoes at Mad Cool, the festival no one can leave

Metallica t-shirts and boat shoes at Mad Cool, the festival no one can leave

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“We cannot guarantee the realization of the festival under the conditions necessary for its smooth running,” the Diversity organization said in a statement on Monday, confirming the suspicions of the last few hours, when its website was no longer working. Antonio Torres, director of the City of Arts and Sciences and sponsor of the festival, assured this newspaper minutes before the press release was published that they had “no information on the alleged cancellation”.

For their part, close sources have admitted to local media that it is because they have not reached the minimum number of tickets sold or investors to guarantee economic solvency.

Subscriptions for the three days of concerts cost from 170 euros the most basic, up to 1,200 euros the prime. The latter included access to a “premium” space in front of the main stage, access to a “premium” terrace with a privileged view from a raised platform, access to the Terrasse L’Umbracle, access to a “premium” with furniture, bars and “premium” toilets, a gourmet tasting dinner and drinks included according to offer. From what they said on their social media on July 6, they had sold 85% of general passes and 70% of prime. This Monday, they assured that, shortly, they would communicate “the procedure for the full return of the tickets”.

“We have been confronted with the complex situation that the culture sector, and more particularly music, is going through on a global level,” the statement continued. That of Diversity had one of the most powerful headliners on the festival scene for an unprecedented event. It would bring together Iggy Pop, Christina Aguilera, Martin Garrix, Black Eyed Peas and the only concert of the most famous reggaeton artist in the world in Spain, Karol G.

Last week the press team contacted the media to offer interviews with its director, the promoter Jesús Lumbreras, and asked for publicity because it is the festival with the most equal programming in our country. We have just said that your sum, here, cannot be subtracted. May your name not erase us. That your inclusion is the human essence that makes existence free. You are a unique galactic code made of infinite combinations of stars,” they said in their manifesto.

During his official presentation last June, Lumbreras announced that the first year of a festival “is always difficult”, but he remained optimistic about the capacity of 24,000 people per day. “The Diversity organizing team worked day in and day out with the aim of being able to introduce a musical window that sought to cover a base of values ​​that lived up to the expectations of our audience,” they said in their farewell statement. .

On their page you can always see the sponsors of the event, most of them Valencian institutions. Mediterranew Musix, VLC Visit Valencia, Valencia Turisme or The City of Arts and Sciences. Renfe, the festival’s official transport, the ticket sales platform for Mediaset and Radio 3, also contributed money.

An unassailable bubble

Valencia’s diversity was one of the first to fall in a summer where nearly a thousand festivals take place. An absolute crowd where newborns or little ones find it difficult to compete with the macro ones, such as the Mad Cool – which is held just two weeks before that of Valencia – or the Primavera Sound. A bubble that somehow had to burst.

The first tragedy at the origin of this bottleneck was experienced at O ​​Son do Camiño, the event in Santiago de Compostela where a stage collapsed, trapping several workers. “We are witnessing a bubble of musical events. As a result, people take on more work than they can handle and situations arise in which people put on scenes for the first time in their lives,” assured a Galician promoter who asked to remain anonymous.

Oversupply also causes caches to skyrocket and can only be paid for by those with a huge government subsidy or an untarnished reputation. This is why Diversity València was a rarity on the festival map. Those who set the standards in this regard are Mad Cool and Primavera Sound. The director of the latter explained the differences between setting up a festival in a big city or doing it in Bilbao or Malaga, or in this case in Valencia: “In Madrid or Barcelona, ​​you find two cities with a very important critical mass , a huge capacity hotel and 150 or 200 air destinations and some of them with a daily frequency” so, in a smaller site, “beyond what you have, what matters is who you are” . And diversity did not even have time to be.

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