Woodstock at 50: Something’s happening at Bethel Woods

The details are really scarce at this time, but there WILL be a show commemorating the 50th anniversary of Woodstock next summer.

The Bethel Woods Center for the Arts, built on the grounds where the original concert took place in 1969, is encouraging people to “save the date” for next August 16-19. And that’s about all they can say for sure at this time.

“We are joining forces to produce Bethel Woods Music and Culture Festival: Celebrating the golden anniversary at the historic site of the 1969 Woodstock Festival! This pan-generational cultural event will feature live music, TED-style talks and special exhibits.”

They promise that the lineup of performers will be announced soon.

Well, ok, there’s a little more: The speakers will include “leading futurists and retro-tech experts.” Whatever that might mean.

The center is also curating a special exhibit on the original festival called We Are Golden.

“We are thrilled to partner with Live Nation and INVNT to produce Bethel Woods Music and Culture Festival,” the center’s CEO, Darlene Fedun, says. “Fifty years ago, people gathered peacefully on our site inspired to change the world through music. As the stewards of this historic site, we remain committed to preserving this rich history and spirit and to educating and inspiring new generations to contribute positively to the world through music, culture and community.”

So that’s all we have to go on at this point. August is still a while away and with the inherent interest in being a part of A Moment such as this, from original counterculture hippies to “hippies” that want to be part of a scene, it almost doesn’t matter who the lineup includes. Tickets will sell, and sell out, regardless of who takes the stage.

There’s also plenty of time for other events honouring the original concert to be announced. For example, the group behind the first concert, Woodstock Ventures LLC, a company formed by Michael Lang, is not involved with the Bethel Woods event. Will he do something else?

Lang told the Poughkeepsie Journal his company has “definite plans” for an event, but it’s not THAT event, so… probably?

Then there’s the lineup posted by Festive Owl back in November, suggesting a multi-stage, genre-smashing festival including everyone from Skrillex to Neil Young as artists who have been approached to appear.  

Amber Healy

I write about music policy and lawsuits because they're endlessly fascinating.

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