Big day Out co-founder Vivian Lees has remained tight lipped since he announced he would be exiting his partnership with Ken West. Now Lees has revealed that he was not completely happy with the way things ended, speaking with The Age, Lees said:
I loved being in the Big Day Out and it was a very poor outcome for me … But I don’t want to be negative about it because it’s my legacy and I put a lot into it.
He also told The Age that he left Big Day Out at the point where they faced insolvency and urgently needed to recapitalise:
Ken wouldn’t hear it. His response was not to look at it as a business proposition but to barge ahead and try to overwhelm me with his arguments.
Lees went on to explain that tension with West had been building for years:
It was the culmination of 10 years of tension involving a lot of telephone screaming between Sydney and Melbourne. It was appalling. I feel like I’ve been in an abusive relationship … I feel strange being out of it when I’ve been part of it for 20 years but, at the same time, I couldn’t work with him. I found him too objectionable.
Ken West has moved on, he recently announced a partnership with C3 Presents, the promoters of the legendary Lollapalooza Festival. When West was asked if it feels strange working on the festival without Lees, he replied:
Not at all! Not at all! I gotta say no. It’s still the same team, a few new faces but the same problems and same ambitions. It’s just that we’re working totally as one unit. I hate to say it, but it actually feels great. It feels like I’ve got a chance to start again.