Loch Hart promoter makes ‘heart wrenching’ move to cancel festival
Victorian music festival Loch Hart won’t go ahead this year, with organisers making the “extremely difficult” decision to cancel the 2020 edition as the coronavirus pandemic continues to impact the industry.
In an statement, festival director Jayden Bath revealed that he and the team were unable to find alternative dates or make any other changes to make Loch Hart 2020 a feasible proposition.
“It is with a heavy heart that we must vacate our November 2020 dates. Given the current state of things in Victoria this is unlikely to come as a shock, however, it is still an extremely difficult decision to make.”
Despite exploring “alternate dates, shifting to a socially distant festival, reducing our size, capacity or amount of days, and even the possibility of a drive-in festival,” the impact of COVID-19 was too much to overcome.
“Ultimately, in the current environment even the best-laid plans can come unstuck. We can only run a festival that we truly believe in and that pays homage to the culture and community that has been built at Loch Hart 2018 and 2019,” he added.
“We are at a pivotal time in our growth as an emerging music festival. We doubled our numbers in our second year, while maintaining our intimate and friendly atmosphere. This put us on a trajectory that we were eager to explore in 2020.
“To potentially halt this growth is nothing short of heart wrenching.”
Loch Hart Amphitheater
Bath went on to reveal that Loch Hart will use the time off to make some big changes for their next festival, including plans to “double-down on our environmental responsibilities, install new site infrastructure, explore new arts genres, and cast an open mind to what the future of Loch Hart may be.
He also took the opportunity to call on the government and music fans to support artists during this trying time.
“This scene must be protected. For the music industry to bounce back, there must be financial assistance from government, as well as the support of fans.
“We are calling on all live music fans to reach out to their favourite band, artist, venue, or festival and let them know you’ll be there to support them when they’re back! A simple wall post, DM, or tagged photo will help to boost morale in these uncertain times.
Loch Hart plans to return in November, 2021
The cancellation of the festival follows the recent postponement of the Red Hot Summer tour, as organisers announced it will take place in 2022 instead.