SXSW has been cancelled. The Austin, Texas music, film, and comedy festivals have been called off in response to increasing Coronavirus concerns. Austin Mayor Steve Adler said: “We have declared a local disaster and associated with that have issued an order that effectively cancels South by Southwest for this year.”
Austin-Travis County leaders have declared a “local state of disaster” In response to the increasing concerns of COVID-19 across the nation,to more proactively increase preventative measures and require mitigation plans for events in the region.
This marks the first time SXSW has been cancelled in it’s 34 year history. SXSW reported 2019 total attendance at all official SXSW events in excess of 280,000, with a 2019 economic impact on the Austin economy of $355.9 million.
“Over the past several days a group of experts has been reviewing the Spring Festival season and keeping track of an evolving situation across the U.S. and our State in relation to COVID-19,” said Dr. Escott. “While there is no clear guidance on what local jurisdictions should do under these circumstances, our local expert advisory panel took a look at the risk factors and identified a number of concerns.”#SXSW has been cancelled. The Austin, Texas music, film, and comedy festivals have been called off in response to increasing Coronavirus concerns. Is the Coronavirus affecting your concert or festival plans?Click To Tweet
— SXSW (@sxsw) March 6, 2020
SXSW released the following statement:
The City of Austin has cancelled the March dates for SXSW and SXSW EDU. SXSW will faithfully follow the City’s directions.
We are devastated to share this news with you. “The show must go on” is in our DNA, and this is the first time in 34 years that the March event will not take place. We are now working through the ramifications of this unprecedented situation.
As recently as Wednesday, Austin Public Health stated that “there’s no evidence that closing SXSW or any other gatherings will make the community safer.” However, this situation evolved rapidly, and we honor and respect the City of Austin’s decision. We are committed to do our part to help protect our staff, attendees, and fellow Austinites.
We are exploring options to reschedule the event and are working to provide a virtual SXSW online experience as soon as possible for 2020 participants, starting with SXSW EDU. For our registrants, clients, and participants we will be in touch as soon as possible and will publish an FAQ.
Is the Coronavirus affecting your concert or festival plans?
source: SXSW, KVUE