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News May 30, 2019

Defqon.1 Australia cancelled after venue withdraws support

Former Assistant Editor
Defqon.1 Australia cancelled after venue withdraws support

Hardstyle-driven music festival Defqon.1 won’t return to Australia in 2019.

The move comes after last year’s event saw two punters lose their lives, with another 13 ending up in hospital.

Festival organisers Q-dance announced in a Facebook post that there will be no event this year, after “Sydney International Regatta Centre and its affiliates have withdrawn their support for the event.”

“Despite our best efforts, we have been unable to secure a suitable replacement venue for the event to take place this September,” said organisers.

The post thanked all attendees over the decade that Defqon.1 has taken place in Sydney.

“To our fans, Ambassadors, and everyone else that has contributed to the incredible memories we created for the past 10 years: from the depths of our orange heart we would like to thank all of you for your ongoing support, dedication, and for creating the most epic family imaginable.”

Following the 2018 festival, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian swore to shut down the festival altogether.

“We will do everything we can to shut this down, I don’t want to see this event happen again.”

Q-dance did not rule out a return in the future for the festival, contingent on finding a potential new venue.

“While we continue to look for a suitable alternative location that meets our quality standards, we remain uncertain if and when we return,” said the festival.

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Posted by Defqon.1 onWednesday, 29 May 2019

There has been a tense relationship between the police and Defqon.1 for many years now.

The festival almost didn’t take place in 2018 after the NSW government backed off on early threats to stop the festival from happening in the state.

Attendees of last year’s festival in Sydney took to social media after the event to slam the NSW Police presence, with many claiming cops were using intimidation tactics to prevent them from accessing medical care and pill-testing kits.

45 people were charged with drug offences at the 2017 festival. An off-duty police officer received a two-year jail sentence after being charged with a sexual assault that same year.

In 2016 there were 77 drug arrests, and in 2015 a man from Albury died of an ecstasy overdose.


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