Music Festivals Rejected for Flushing Meadows, Panorama to Launch at Randall's Island Instead - NBC New York

Music Festivals Rejected for Flushing Meadows, Panorama to Launch at Randall's Island Instead



    Music Festivals Rejected for Flushing Meadows, Panorama to Launch at Randall's Island Instead
    INDIO, CA - APRIL 18: Balloons explode over the crowd during the Andrew McMahon In The Wilderness performance onstage during day 2 of the 2015 Coachella Valley Music And Arts Festival (Weekend 2) at The Empire Polo Club on April 18, 2015 in Indio, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for Coachella)

    Queens won't soon be getting a Coachella of its own.

    The city's parks department has rejected the much buzzed-about proposals for multi-day music festivals at Flushing Meadows Corona Park, saying it has decided not to allow any large-scale music festivals at the 900-acre park this year. 

    "While we are heartened by the interest in one of Queens' most historic parks, our primary concern is ensuring the park is available for the many New Yorkers who call Flushing Meadows Corona Park their backyard," said Parks Commissioner Mitchell J. Silver. 

    AEG, the organizers of the annual Coachella music festival in California -- a magnet for some of the biggest rock and hip-hop acts in the world -- had been meeting with officials in Queens to talk about bringing a similar music festival to the East Coast, to be called Panorama, this summer.

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    Ultimately, the parks department rejected the proposed festival for Flushing Meadows Corona Park, along with proposals for similar multi-day music festivals from two other concert companies, MSG and Founders. 

    Parks officials said Tuesday after analyzing the potential impact, they determined it wouldn't be appropriate to add the large concert events to a park that already hosts so many cultural and athletic events during the warm weather months.

    It's not the end of the story for the Panorama Festival, however. AEG's Goldenvoice division is now planning to bring the three-day event to Randall's Island this July instead, to be held from 22nd through the 24th.  

    "The inaugural event will present three days of top tier musical performances, dynamic art installations, innovative technology and some of NYC's best local eats," the company said in a press release.

    A lineup and ticketing announcements have not yet been released. 

    Randall's Island already hosts the music festival Governors Ball, operated by Founders, each July. Tom Russell and Jordan Wolowitz previously expressed concerns about the "tremendous competition" when Panorama Festival was first pitched last year. 

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    "When a small business goes up against corporate machine, it usually does not work out in the small business's favor," Russell told NBC 4.

    Goldenvoice festival producer Mark Shulman said Tuesday, "NYC sustains multiple music festivals and Panorama will add one additional entertainment option over the summer. We believe all the many festivals here can coexist, thrive and have long term success." 

    New York City parks officials also promised Tuesday to explore the possibility of creating some sort of framework for music festivals at Flushing Meadows in the future -- one that would include limits on the number, scale and nature of the festivals so that the park and its users wouldn't be disrupted. The public would also get to weigh in.

    Goldenvoice said that it's committed to keep talking with Queens and city officials to try to bring Panorama Festival -- which takes its name from the nearly 10,000 square-foot-to-scale model of the city located in Queens Museum -- to the borough. 

    "We look forward to continuing our discussions with NYC Parks to create an event to take place in Queens in the future," said Shulman.

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