All Tomorrow's Parties 2.0 Spring Festivals Plagued by Confusion Over Payment
“Miscommunication” between event organizers and venue owners has thrown two U.K. legs of the All Tomorrow’s Parties 2.0 festival into doubt.
ATP's 2.0 events, curated by British comedian Stewart Lee and American hardcore alternative band Drive Like Jehu, were scheduled to take place at Pontins holiday camp in Prestatyn, North Wales on the respective weekends of April 15-17 and 22-24.
However, as a result of what increasingly looks like either a scheduling error or an outstanding debt from promoters, the holiday camp has continued taking “family bookings” on the same dates the festival is due to take place. When contacted by concerned ticket holders whether this meant the event had been pulled, Pontins is reported to have responded: “ATP has been cancelled by the organizer.”
Festival bosses denied that claim, with a statement on ATP’s official Twitter account saying: “These events have not been canceled, we'll endeavour to keep you updated."
A subsequent post stated: "We have just spoken to Pontins and we're currently resolving this miscommunication. Our events are going ahead as planned."
In an interview today with respected digital magazine The Quietus, curator Stewart Lee says of the situation that "it's a bit difficult to find out what the problem is. But, added to that, I can see why people's alarm bells are ringing, given that he's cancelled two events."
ATP did not respond to requests to comment. When contacted by Billboard, a booking agent for Pontins explained that because the holiday firm was yet to receive payment from festival promoters, the two ATP weekends had not been “officially confirmed” but did say that, as far as they were aware, neither event had been canceled. The booking agent added that, at present, Pontins was still taking “family bookings” for the same dates as ATP 2.0, with the possibility of the holiday site becoming a shared occupancy should the situation become resolved.
The confusion is not the first time that All Tomorrow’s Parties has run into scheduling and ticketing trouble.
In 2014, its London-based Jabberwocky festival – featuring Neutral Milk Hotel, James Blake, Caribou and Kurt Vile - was axed three days before it was scheduled to begin. At the time, organizers blamed the cancelation on a “succession of events that have lost money in an increasingly aggressive festival market.”
Two years prior, ATP Concerts Limited was placed in voluntary liquidation -- similar to chapter 10 bankruptcy in the States -- transferring all its assets, including the rights to the All Tomorrow's Parties festival, label, and shows, to a new company called Willwal Limited. 2012 also saw organizers fall into dispute with the Butlins holiday camp chain, bringing an end to a six-year partnership.