Friday, September 29

Primavera Sound Madrid brings together 42,000 attendees on Friday, half of what was originally planned

The debut of Primavera Sound in Madrid has been marked by setbacks. The first was the heavy rains that forced the cancellation of the day on Thursday. The second, the collapse at the entrance to the City of Rock on Friday -which could be held as planned-, which caused attendees to need up to two hours and forty-five minutes to reach Arganda del Rey in the free shuttles offered by the organization, despite the fact that the journey was estimated to last 30 minutes.

Villano Antillano: “Being neutral is not the position of a real artist”


Reached on Saturday, the event has taken stock of what happened, sharing that despite the fact that, as announced by the Madrid’s community In March, 85,000 daily attendees were expected, finally there were 42,000 on Thursday and 48,000 are expected this Saturday. That is, half of what was expected. The reason: the mobility conditions of the space chosen to host the concerts.

“We started working with a vision of wanting to make a very important festival. But when we began to establish how to get there, we realized that this enclosure does not absorb more than 50,000 people per day due to mobility issues. And this has been demonstrated”, commented Almudena Heredero, director of Primavera Sound Madrid.

The person in charge has indicated that it does allow them to have a festival “in the same format with the same number of stages but it does not allow for a public capacity beyond that”. Reason why they have advanced that once the shows conclude this Sunday, maintaining the format in the City of Rock or not will be one of the points that they will value: “Here it normally does not rain so much, but it is clear that it is a venue that suffers with Water”.

Therefore, before the collapse that occurred at the entrance to the facility located in Arganda del Rey, it was already known that mobility could wreak havoc and, given the result, insufficient measures were taken. The organization has attributed part of the blame to the weather conditions, since the parking area was one of the most affected by the storm. Despite the fact that the space was reconditioned so that, without mud or water, the concerts could be offered, this Friday they were able to enable only 50% of the parking spaces. “This lack of parking made it difficult to access the site, it has to do with areas disabled by the rains,” they said.

The main ones affected by the delay were Depeche Mode fans, headlining this Friday along with rapper Kendrick Lamar, whose start time was set at 9:00 p.m. His show was delayed 45 minutes. A decision that they have assured that they made to alleviate the delay in transport, and allow “the greatest number of people to arrive on time. The group was ready.” The event hopes that the same conflict will not be repeated this Saturday. For now, access has been different for private vehicles and free buses, which were the same on Friday, and only one lane. It is still early to assess whether this change is enough throughout the afternoon to avoid traffic jams.

Regarding whether the consequences of the storm could have been alleviated in some way, Heredero has indicated: “Those of us who live in Madrid know that it is quite unheard of for there to be so much rain in a row for so many days. It is hard to find a precedent at this time of year and in the same area. It has been an exceptional issue. Day by day we were seeing that the circumstances were complicated and were affecting pre-production. A very serious situation has arisen.”

Alleviate the storm against the clock

Heir has insisted: “All our efforts have been to be able to open the doors yesterday and carry out the festival until it ends. We will sit down to evaluate, but despite the fact that Thursday’s day was suspended, there have been 222 performances in total. Regarding the return of the tickets for the suspended day, the festival has announced that they cannot give a unanimous answer, because it will be necessary to evaluate “case by case”, depending on the type of ticket that each spectator will have.

Heir has taken the opportunity to extol that, beyond the mishaps, Primavera Sound in Madrid has had a joint bill. “It is not usual for festivals with more than 200 performances to have 39% female artists, 50% male and another 10% mixed groups or artists who do not identify with either of these two genders.” Precisely Rosalía, Bad Gyal, Arlo Parks, Villano Antillano and Caroline Polachek are the main attractions this Saturday – with the permission of the Italian band Maneskin–.