As the saying goes, you can never have too much of a good thing. Well, the music festival industry is putting that to the test with new festivals popping up all across the U.S. and beyond. Thus far in 2008, ticket sales have been uneven for festivals with some seeing growth and others in decline.
According to a report in USA Today major festivals like Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festivals and Bonnaroo have reported their sales being down from last year. But festivals like Sasquatch! and Stagecoach Festival saw increases.
Sales on the secondary market have also reflected those patterns. RazorGator spokesperson Toni Lamb told TicketNews that they have seen a similar decline for major festivals adding that at the same time, “seen a rise in the growing number ticket buyers at the more local festivals as they pop up; so it kind of balances out.”
Many reasons have been explored for lagging sales at some festivals including inflated gas prices and people choosing festivals that are closer to home to save on expenses. Also, more and more music festivals are beginning to sprout up around the world, including 450 in the U.K. alone, according to the Birmingham Mail.
“It’s a demand that has more supply than it had 10 years ago — or even two years ago,” says Ray Waddell, Billboard’s touring editor told USA today.
Some of the first festivals capitalized on that interest but now with more choices, festivals are going start fighting for fans and bands to perform at theirs.
“A lot of people are going to individual concerts,” T.J. Niedospial, of Club Tickets, told TicketNews. He added that many fans want to go to festivals only to see one or two of the bands playing.
“The festival sphere is in a very early stage of development [in the USA], Bonnaroo promoter Ashley Capps said to USA Today.”There remains growth potential. But what’s going to set the winners apart from the losers are those festivals that are able to create a memorable experience that makes their festival like none other.”