While the Australian music scene still laments the one-off absence of the iconic Bluesfest festival back in April, organisers are looking ahead to next year, with early bird tickets going on sale for one week early from today.
The announcement comes just one week out from what organisers are referring to as a “historical” first artist announcement, which will see the lineup for the 2021 event begin to be revealed.
“Right now the only constant is change, and we are ready for it”, explained Festival Director, Peter Noble OAM in a statement. “We believe in music and we are coming back for Bluesfest 2021, not just for us, but because the industry needs us to come back.”
Bluesfest was originally slated to take place across the Easter long weekend back in April, and while organisers were initially adamant in their decision to ensure this year’s event went ahead as planned, restrictions on mass gatherings soon saw the festival forced to cancel its festivities for the first time since its inception 31 years ago.
“Our industry, the music business has its back against the wall. COVID has shut us down,” Noble continued. “Since the middle of March, almost everyone in our industry has received no income.
“As the Festival Director of Bluesfest and a music industry veteran I strongly feel that we must make positive steps to move forward and show the thousands of people that depend on us that there is a future coming – our industry and events will come back. We know there will be more challenges, however, we also know that we are a resilient industry that loves and wants to get back to the business of entertaining.”
As part of their plan to return to the business of entertaining, Bluesfest have revealed that the first artist announcement for 2021 will take place on July 8th, though there’s currently no word as to who will be on the bill.
In late May, the festival announced a number of headline dates for the acts originally set to appear on the 2020 festival lineup. While many of these artists – including the likes of Patti Smith, George Benson, and Buffy Sainte-Marie – are set to tour around the same time as Bluesfest 2021, there’s been no official word that any of these artists will appear on the lineup for next year.
“As those challenges present we will meet and rise to every single one of them to deliver Bluesfest,” continues Peter Noble. “We call on our industry to get behind us at this time because we are leading the charge. If we find that the internationals can’t come, we will add more Aussies. If we find the internationals can come, we might add more internationals.
“What our team is dedicated to doing is everything it takes to present Bluesfest Easter 2021 in a manner where it will be our most legendary festival yet.”
In anticipation of the coming lineup, Bluesfest are today launching an early bird sale of tickets to their 2021 event, with these passes on sale for one week only from 9am AEST, Wednesday, July 1st.
At the current time, government regulations mean that Bluesfest will be allowed to host 7,500 people seated onsite. While it is expected that restrictions will ease between now and next April, festival organisers have noted there is no risk in buying tickets, as all funds will be held in a locked account in the event that a refund becomes a necessity.
Bluesfest note they remain committed to delivering the best possible event when it takes place across the Easter long weekend in 2021, and are working on different plans for any potential responses the Australian government rolls out between now and April of next year.
“What I can say is whilst we don’t know what the future holds for the greater music industry you can be assured we here at Bluesfest are fully committed to presenting an outstanding event in accordance with government regulations,” concludes Peter Noble.