The fifth Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival will be held June 16-18 at its familiar 700-acre site in Manchester, Tenn., 60 miles southeast of Nashville. This year, organizers are reducing the capacity by 10,000 people to 80,000, returning the event to its 2003 crowd size.
“This size enables us to have a more comfortable environment for everyone involved and to create the best festival experience we can imagine,” reads a message on the Bonnaroo Web site.
The 2005 edition of Bonnaroo recently was named top festival of the year at the Billboard Roadwork ’05 Touring Awards. The event drew paid attendance of about 80,000 people and grossed in excess of $14 million.
“When we started the event the first year, definitely the program was much more oriented to what you call the jam bands,” festival co-producer Jonathan Mayers told Billboard in June. “But I think, smartly, each year we’ve tried to open it up a bit and instill more diversity into our lineup. The fact that we can have John Prine and Mars Volta and it works is an amazing thing.”
In late October, Bonnaroo organizers headed west for the inaugural Vegoose festival, which featured performances from Trey Anastasio, Jack Johnson, the Flaming Lips and Ween, among others. Vegoose is expected to return in 2006.