The annual Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival is the latest major event to be affected as worldwide concerns over COVID-19, commonly known as coronavirus, continue to grow.
On Tuesday afternoon, Coachella organizers officially announced the festival was being postponed. In addition, the country-themed Stagecoach festival is also being pushed back to the fall.
“At the direction of the County of Riverside and local health authorities, we must sadly confirm the rescheduling of Coachella and Stagecoach due to COVID-19 concerns,” reads a statement from the organizers of the California music festival. “While this decision comes at a time of universal uncertainty, we take the safety and health of our guests, staff and community very seriously. We urge everyone to follow the guidelines and protocols put forth by public health officials.”
Coachella has been shifted to October 9, 10 and 11 and October 16, 17 and 18, 2020. Stagecoach will take place on the following two weekends, October 23, 24 and 25, 2020. “All purchases for the April dates will be honored for the rescheduled October dates,” the statement continues. ” Purchasers will be notified by Friday, March 13 on how to obtain a refund if they are unable to attend.”
The lineup was set to feature performances from headliners like Travis Scott, Frank Ocean, Rage Against the Machine, Lana Del Rey, Megan Thee Stallion, DaBaby and more.
The Coachella postponement follows the cancellation of festivals like South by Southwest, Miami’s Ultra Music Festival and France’s Tomorrowland Winter 2020 as other major events begin to cancel proactively over fears about concertgoers possible spreading the potentially-fatal flu-like virus.
Musical acts like BTS and Avril Lavigne have also cancelled tour dates in countries with high levels of coronavirus cases, film and television projects like Mission: Impossible 7 and The Amazing Race have shut down production and movies like the upcoming James Bond epic, “No Time to Die”, have cancelled premieres and pushed release dates over the public health concerns.
Infectious disease researcher Dr. Ravina Kullar spoke with ET last week about the threat of the virus, saying she’s “very concerned” about the growing numbers of COVID-19 cases in the U.S. and around the world, but cautioning that there are currently greater threats to American public health — the flu, for example.
However, Dr. Kullar was supportive of organizations cancelling public events like festivals and conventions, especially in areas with higher concentrations of confirmed coronavirus cases. “I think that’s a good idea. Until we get a handle and grasp on this virus, I think we need to take precautionary measures.”
See more on how artists are handling coronavirus cancellations in the video below.
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