The organisers of the cancelled Homebake Festival have released a new statement detailing the reasoning behind the cancellation of the 2013 event. Released to Fairfax, the statement has event co-promoter Michael Chugg alleging the blame lies with the Royal Botanic Gardens Trust.
Yesterday, Soundwave promoter AJ Maddah hit back at Homebake organisers for what he perceived as organisers blaming his Harvest Festival event for the Homebake cancellation, saying “This is lamest excuse I’ve heard for a festival cancellation.”
Chugg and Maddah appear to have made amends however, with Chugg telling The Sydney Morning Herald, “I believe AJ now understands we are not blaming Harvest – the RBG Trust brought us undone, not Harvest.”
Chugg said that the RBG Trust’s events department okayed the decision to have Harvest take place in Homebake’s usual residence of The Domain, within a fortnight of Homebake, forcing them to shift to the Sydney Opera House forecourt––a decision met with a lukewarm reception from punters.
“AJ and I spoke on the phone today and he told me that when The Domain suggested their venue instead of Centennial Park, AJ asked the RBG Trust to please call Homebake and the Sydney Festival to make sure we were all OK with the decision,” said Chugg.
“The Gardens told him we were OK, which was a blatant lie. We didn’t find out until less than 30 minutes before the Harvest event was announced and I believe we were all treated with blatant disrespect,” he added.
However, a spokeswoman for the RBG Trust told Fairfax:
“The decision not to proceed with Homebake at The Domain was a matter for Homebake. A number of large events, including music festivals, are held in the Domain each year.
“The Royal Botanic Gardens and Domain Trust agreed to accommodate another event during November 2013 due to a double booking at a different venue.
“The Domain has been a longstanding host of the Homebake festival and worked successfully with organisers during this time. We would be proud to continue to work with them in the future.
“We are saddened to learn that the location chosen this year as an alternative to the Domain was not successful.”
Gauging the initial social media reaction to the Homebake 2013 announcement, it appeared that punters were also critical of the change in format from a one-day festival to a three-day event, an underwhelming lineup, and overpriced tickets.
Combined with the unpopular new venue, these changes proved deadly.
(Via Sydney Morning Herald)