With Kanye West, The Strokes and The Killers headlining this year’s Governors Ball, the festival seems stronger than ever.
Digging deeper into the lineup finds cult favorites like Amityville’s De La Soul, Robyn and Death Cab for Cutie, as well as buzzed-about newcomers like Lake Grove’s Jon Bellion, rockers Bully and DJ Duke Dumont.
However, the future of the festival is in question with the arrival of the competing Panorama Festival, created by Coachella producers Goldenvoice, also set for Randall's Island later this summer. The city approved the new festival over the objections of Governors Ball producers Founders Entertainment.
“We’re very confident our lineup and proven track record will draw a great crowd to Governors Ball this year,” Founders Entertainment partner Tom Russell said in a statement. “But this is a shortsighted and disappointing solution. The city needs a long-term strategy for approving music festivals that ensures it is maximizing the economic and community impact of these events. Scheduling two same-genre festivals on top of each like this makes it difficult for either to provide the maximum benefit to its fans, its neighbors and taxpayers.”
Goldenvoice producer Mark Shulman says that both festivals can succeed.
“New York City has 12.5 million residents, plus an enormous number of domestic and international visitors, who keep our many sports arenas, music venues, museums, theaters and restaurants at capacity each night,” he said in a statement. “NYC sustains multiple music festivals, and Panorama will add one additional entertainment option over the summer.”
This year will show whether that is true.