It was billed as the luxury festival for the Instagram generation: huge acts like Major Lazer, Tyga and, er, Blink 182 playing a private island in the Bahamas, organised by Ja Rule, promoted by a gaggle of supermodels in bikinis, with ticket packages costing anything from $450 for day passes up to $12,000 for a VIP package.
On its official site – which is still up, incredibly – organisers describe it as “a cultural moment created from a blend of music, art, and food”, with partygoers whisked on to a hyper-exclusive resort on Great Exuma on “a custom, VIP configured Boeing 737” and staying in “modern, eco-friendly geodesic domes”. There’s an impossibly cute population of wild pigs living on the island, with organised tours of their home beaches. Hell, you could rent a yacht for a mere nine grand extra per day.
But behind the glamour of the woozy Instagram filters and Emily Ratajkowski’s bum, the reality is not unfolding quite as guests are expecting. The festival’s first official day is only just dawning, and Twitter and Reddit are ablaze with stories we can’t quite believe.
Rumours are flying thick and fast about what’s happening at the site. Amongst the claims we’ve seen:
- Luggage is being thrown out of packing containers
- Some of the tents, which are the kind that the US government’s disaster relief department uses in crises, have been set on fire by rampaging guests
- Security don’t speak much English and are allegedly laying people out
- Someone’s raided a bar and is handing out free booze to people trapped on the island
- The US embassy in the Bahamas is chartering emergency flights off the island
- The first night’s food experience was a bread roll, two slices of processed cheese and some letteuce
- Many tents don’t have beds, and those that do are wet and lacking bedding
- The lockers don’t have locks
- There is no beer on site because they ordered it too late
Online, amused at the thought of people rich enough to shell out $12,000 on a VIP experience that doesn’t even include all the available upgrades having this bad of a time, is having a field day.
Fyre Festival is being held over two weekends. You’ve probably missed the boat for the first event, which is on between today and Sunday (28 – 30 April), but it looks like you might be able to get a good deal on the next one, which is on from 5 – 7 May. If they don’t cancel it, that is, which they definitely, surely will.
Latest: the event has been ‘postponed’, presumably until the end of time.
Due to unforeseen and extenuating circumstances, Fyre Festival has been fully postponed (con't)— Fyre Festival (@fyrefestival) April 28, 2017
After assessing the situation this morning and looking at best options for our guests, we cannot move forward as we hoped we could (con't)— Fyre Festival (@fyrefestival) April 28, 2017
Here’s the story as it unfolded:
I just Googled"Fyre Festival" and I can't stop fucking laughing.— Spike - SPX W72-73 (@Iron_Spike) April 28, 2017
Oh, Jesus. If you live for train wrecks, STRAP THE FUCK IN.
An "exclusive," "luxury" music festival with tickets starting at $450 for out-by-nightfall day passes and +$12,000 deluxe packages.— Spike - SPX W72-73 (@Iron_Spike) April 28, 2017
Held in Exumas cay in the Bahamas, That 12k gets you a "rustic," furnished glamping tent with 2 king-sized beds, plus 4 festival passes.— Spike - SPX W72-73 (@Iron_Spike) April 28, 2017
Of course, upgrades were available, including catering, special events, and VIP passes. (No, that base 12k doesn't get you VIP access.)— Spike - SPX W72-73 (@Iron_Spike) April 28, 2017
Participating bands included Blink 182, Tyga and Migos. Planned activities included yoga, massages, and rentable yachts (starting at $60k).— Spike - SPX W72-73 (@Iron_Spike) April 28, 2017
ANYWAY.— Spike - SPX W72-73 (@Iron_Spike) April 28, 2017
This festival was apparently advertised extensively on Instagram, playing up the glamour and "lifestyle"angle of the event.
It was going to be held on a private island "once owned by Pablo Escobar." it would feature supermodels hanging out to chat with.— Spike - SPX W72-73 (@Iron_Spike) April 28, 2017
Over $100,000 in "treasure" would be hidden around the island for a fun, rick-kid treasure hunt. Kendall Jenner was promoting it.— Spike - SPX W72-73 (@Iron_Spike) April 28, 2017
You get the idea. Exclusivity, conspicuous consumption, & many, MANY promises of excellent selfies for your already-insufferable Instagram.— Spike - SPX W72-73 (@Iron_Spike) April 28, 2017
But even before launch, rumors began circulating Fyre Festival was NOT what it seemed, despite celeb organizer's Ja Rule's excited tweets.— Spike - SPX W72-73 (@Iron_Spike) April 28, 2017
Private island? No, it was going to be held on or near a Sandals, on a large island. (A chain resort for us scum, in other words.)— Spike - SPX W72-73 (@Iron_Spike) April 28, 2017
So popular tickets were selling out? Noooo, they would announce being sold out, then mysteriously reappear for sale repeatedly.— Spike - SPX W72-73 (@Iron_Spike) April 28, 2017
Cool acts on the main stage? No, the line-up was constantly shifting; even now, on festival day, the site features TBD performing slots.— Spike - SPX W72-73 (@Iron_Spike) April 28, 2017
And rumors infrastructure labor was going unpaid, with the festival reportedly selling so few tickets that loans were necessary for set-up.— Spike - SPX W72-73 (@Iron_Spike) April 28, 2017
Whistle-blowing began in March, but the festival moved ahead regardless,and attendees began to arrive the 27th.— Spike - SPX W72-73 (@Iron_Spike) April 28, 2017
Here's what they found.
And festival-goers are reporting feral dogs, cancelled flights, and other attendees starting fights with locals.— Spike - SPX W72-73 (@Iron_Spike) April 28, 2017
It's so bad, SO FUCKIN' BAD, that the US Embassy in The Bahamas is now intervening in an attempt to get people home immediately.— Spike - SPX W72-73 (@Iron_Spike) April 28, 2017
So to recap? Some Instagram kids just paid between $450 & +$12k... to be stranded... in a tropical tent city. Cuz some models told them to.— Spike - SPX W72-73 (@Iron_Spike) April 28, 2017
DashCon: I can't believe I fucked up this bad. No one will ever outdo this. Ever. I'm the worst of all time.— Spike - RCCC 832 (@Iron_Spike) April 28, 2017
Fyre Festival: Hold my beer.