US music festivals Burning Man and Electric Zoo both experienced partial cancellations at the weekend. Burning Man was hit by flooding due to torrential rain, while Electric Zoo called off its first day due to “global supply chain disruptions”.
The week-long Burning Man, which takes place on a dry lake bed (or playa) in Nevada, began on 27 Aug. On 1 Sep it was hit by heavy rain, causing flash floods. Conditions were so bad that organisers closed the front gates and told attendees on site to take shelter and conserve water, food and fuel. Vehicles aside from the emergency services were barred from driving around the site.
Some still attempted to make their escape, with producer Diplo reporting on social media that he and comedian Chris Rock walked five miles through the mud before being given a lift by a fan in a pick up truck.
just walked 5 miles in the mud out of burning man with chris rock and a fan picked us up pic.twitter.com/0uxSXLHgY6
— diplo (@diplo) September 2, 2023
Around 70,000 people are thought to have attended the event, and it was only this morning that organisers said that conditions had improved enough for people to begin leaving the site, having previously said that they were hopeful that they could begin evacuating everyone on Monday evening “if weather conditions are in our favour”.
Meanwhile, New York-based dance music festival Electric Zoo called off its first day on Friday after failing to complete construction of the main stage in time.
“This year has presented unparalleled challenges for everyone”, wrote organisers in a statement. “The global supply chain disruptions have impacted industries worldwide, and, sadly, our beloved festival has not been immune. These unexpected delays have prevented us from completing the construction of the main stage in time for day one”.
Among the performers to have shows cancelled were The Chainsmokers and Kx5 – the collaborative project from Deadmau5 and Kaskade.
The event did open on Saturday, although two hours later than planned. Organisers have confirmed that ticket holders affected by the Friday cancellation will get refunds.
Aside from the first day cancellation, it was also reported that some ticket holders were turned away from the event on the final day, being told that it was already full.