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Burning Man has been cancelled for the first time ever

This year Black Rock City will be built only online

Burning Man has been cancelled for the first time ever This year Black Rock City will be built only online

Burning Man 2020 goes online. The Burning Man festival was founded in 1986 in Baker Beach, San Francisco, but became worldwide famous in 1991 when it moved to Black Rock City, Nevada and is considered to be the godfather of all the festivals in the world. Following many speculations, this year's edition is not cancelled but it will take place "on the multiverse", on a specific website. The pandemic of Coronavirus is claiming another victim: from the MET Gala to the Cannes Film Festival, in the past few days, many events that were supposed to take place in spring and summer have been postponed or definitely cancelled. 

"I'm not here to tell you that we're cancelling it", said Marian Goodell, CEO of the no-profit organization that manages the Burning Man festival, "but to invite you to a virtual Burning Man. Black Rock City 2020 is in the multiverse." Burning Man is a milestone in the history of festivals: in 2014 it was parodied by The Simpsons (episode 7, season 26), while in 1998 it actually invented the doodles of Google (the first doodle ever realized by the company was the symbol of Burning Man behind the "O" of "Google" - and it was meant to inform users that the staff was out of the office for attending the festival).

Every year, the end of Easter festivities means the beginning of the festivals season (from Sonar in Barcelona to the Sziget in Budapest). This year, at least for now, the festivals have mostly been suspended due to Coronavirus. The most striking example is the Cannes Film Festival, who was supposed to take place between May 12-23 and is now indefinitely postponed (Director Thierry Fremaux is hoping to host it in June, but considering the news, it's not likely).

Among the festivals that have been cancelled or postponed:

  • Ultra Music Festival, Miami (March 20-22), postponed to 2021.
  • PaleyFest, the Los Angeles most famous television festival supposed to take place in March 2020, has been definitely cancelled.
  • Coachella, scheduled in April 2020 with a line-up of artists like Frank Ocean and Travis Scott, is now postponed to October 2020.
  • The annual series of TED conferences, scheduled for April 20-24 in Vancouver, is still deciding whether to air exclusively online or to postpone its talks to July.
  • Netflix is a Joke Fest (April 27 - May 3), the first comedy festival hosted by Netflix, has been indefinitely postponed.
  • Hot Docs (April 30 - May 10), Toronto, the biggest documentary film festival in North America, has been postponed.
  • E3, the largest videogames market place in the world, has been replaced with an online experience.
  • Firefly Music Festival (June 8-21) has been cancelled.
  • Glastonbury 2020 (June 24-28, Glastonbury, United Kingdom) has been cancelled.
  • Summerfest, "the largest festival in the world" (June 24 - July 5), was postponed to the first three weekends of September.
  • The French version of Tomorrowland scheduled for March has been obviously cancelled, while there still have not been official comments regarding its summer edition, that is scheduled to be host in Belgium in July.
  • Tribeca Film Festival in New York, the film festival founded in 2001 by Robert De Niro, was scheduled for August 2020 and has been indefinitely postponed.
  • There is no news about the Venice Film Festival, that should have taken place between September 2-12 2020 at Lido di Venezia. For now, there hasn't been any official statement.

For those who will extremely miss the festivals season and vibes, Coachella uploaded on YouTube the documentary about its history: Coachella: 20 Years in the Desert, featuring Travis Scott, Billie Eilish, Daft Punk, Madonna, Radiohead, Beck, The White Stripes, LCD Soundsystem, Rage Against the Machine and many others. The film can be streamed for free anytime and anywhere. At least, a piece of good news.