After months of speculation and fan anxiety, the promoter of Electronic Daisy Carnival had a message for everyone: EDC Las Vegas is on for May! But that may not be so. Despite promoter Pasquale Rotella‘s assertion that the biggest dance music festival in North America will go forward as planned in May, Las Vegas may be saying, “not so fast!” So with mixed messages coming from high places, what’s a fan to do? WTH is actually happening with EDC Vegas 2021?
Las Vegas Festivals Have Been Canceled
In Las Vegas, there’s nothing quite as exciting as a music festival. Although the king of cities can claim fame in any number of arenas like casinos, hotels, and unique entertainment destinations, it does music festivals better than anywhere else in the world. Something about that desert heat encourages attendees to let loose and enjoy, and Vegas’s signature “hospitality above all” approach to events makes EDC Las Vegas and its sister festivals peerless.
When it was announced that big festivals like Coachella were canceled, antsy fans who have waited a year to return to their roots grieved. Although it looks like Bonnaroo will move ahead in the Fall, Coachella isn’t expected to move ahead until 2022. Those with feet itching for a good music event have been holding their breath waiting for news on EDC.
Pasquale Says Yea, Vegas May Say Nay!
Unfortunately, there are mixed messages circulating right now. Eager to celebrate the festival’s 25th year, Rotella announced on Instagram, “Electric Daisy Carnival is finally on the horizon. There were times during the pandemic when many of us lost hope. We were challenged to learn & listen to our hearts & trust that the storm would eventually pass, making way for a bright & sunny future for those in our community & around the world.
With the world being shutdown for over a year, I’m happy to announce we’re on our way to being able to celebrate in person. Book your flights, hotels & shuttles — EDC Las Vegas is on for May 21+22+23! ❤️
We are moving forward as planned & will be working closely with local & state officials to make the show as safe as possible. You can expect the full EDC experience with no details spared, from the festival grounds to the music, stages, art, performers, artists & fireworks! I look forward to seeing all your beautiful faces & feeling your incredible energy, and I couldn’t be more excited.✨
More details on safety protocols & the lineup will be shared soon. If you’re unable to attend in May 2021, no worries, but you’ll be missed. You can go to the link in my bio to transfer your ticket to 2022.
We’re ready to spread our wings & embrace our community who we miss so much. We know there may be challenges in front of us, which we will accept & do our best to overcome. We’ve been apart for a long time & I can’t wait to join you, united, Under the Electric Sky.”
While that sounds like a promise you could bet the farm on, you may not want to make plans just yet; the proposal for EDC has not been approved. Although an initial proposal and safety plan was submitted, it was subsequently rejected. No new plan was submitted, leaving the future of the festival in doubt. No lineup has been announced either.
Fans are stuck hoping it works out because tickets have already sold out online.
What’s Really Happening?
The answer is that nobody knows. It seems likely that EDC organizers will face an uphill battle to earn approval for the festival to move forward, given the cautious forward momentum of reopening. However, the organizers are under immense pressure to find some path forward with so many attendees already monetarily invested.
Festivals like EDC Vegas are almost cult-like in the devotion of their fans, and Rotella is a great force. The promoter seems to hope to will the event into being, despite the state and city restrictions. And the concern is: if Rotella calls, they will come, regardless of the official status of the event. It’s understandable that attendees are desperate for things to move forward as planned, as they’ve invested both time and emotion in planning and preparing, but ultimately it’s up to Vegas safety officials to make the call. For now, the future is still in question, but both parties have reasons to want to resolve answers quickly and completely, which works in favor of attendees. If the festival moves forward, attendees can expect to see strict COVID safety measures including a required proof of a negative COVID test, COVID-sniffing dogs, and mask requirements among others.
UPDATE 4/21/21 5:50AM
Late Tuesday night, Rotella released a statement about the date of EDC. He announced that the festival will not go forward in May as planned, instead it’s being pushed back to October. Leading up to this update, Clark County passed a reopening plan requiring that 60 percent of residents must have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine before social distancing requirement are removed and large-scale events can take place. In addition, 80 percent occupancy for public gatherings will be approved as of May 1 and social distancing will go from six feet to three feet. Masks still required in all instances.
Rotella said that there are concerns that vaccination requirements to lift capacity restrictions won’t be met in time for the event, which is supposed to take place in one month from now. Rotella says they just can’t take the risk and have opted to push it back to give the local population more time to reach the vaccination goal.
Billboard shared the full statement:
“I am sorry to say that EDC Las Vegas needs to move to October. I want to thank everyone who has put their heart and soul into this show—the Insomniac team, artists, agents, managers, production crews, the Las Vegas Motor Speedway staff, the government officials who supported us, and most importantly, you, the Headliners.
As we expected and were assured prior to announcing the festival for May, Nevada state officials announced they would lift social distancing requirements as of May 1, creating a path for EDC to happen with strict safety guidelines in place. We just had a meeting in Las Vegas this past Friday with police, fire, medical, and other agencies involved with EDC to plan out details surrounding the event.
However, today, Clark County (home of EDC & the Las Vegas Motor Speedway) passed a reopening plan that requires 60% of their residents to be vaccinated before restrictions over large scale gatherings such as EDC can be lifted. Unfortunately, the rate at which people get vaccinated before EDC is out of our control. It might happen in time, it might not. Either way, we can’t take that risk.
Our team has been working around the clock to organize this event. We currently have over 40 trucks en route to the Las Vegas Motor Speedway from all over the country. The lineup is fully booked and was going to be announced tomorrow at 12pm PT. The team and I are heartbroken, as I know many of you are as well. For those who have stayed with us on this journey, I thank you. Your trust & loyalty is what gives us strength to keep moving forward.
The good news is that EDC Las Vegas will still take place on the new dates of October 22-24, 2021. Your ticket will automatically be transferred to the new dates, or you may elect to receive a refund by clicking the link in my bio. If you have already transferred your ticket to 2022, your ticket will also be transferred to the new dates unless you choose to receive a refund.
I continue to believe it’s important we get back out on the dancefloor as soon as possible, and I won’t give up on trying to make that happen. I will be announcing an AMA on Reddit in the near future to address any questions.”