Authorities were concerned by rising floods along the Hawkesbury River that forced evacuations.
Ticket provider Greentix said it would make refunds to those who bought A$200 (US$211.50) tickets by credit card. But festival promoter Andy Rigby then confessed that the event had not been insured for natural disasters and the 3,000 fans who’d paid through other methods would not recoup their money.
“This is an absolutely devastating situation,” he posted on its Facebook page.
Rigby admitted the refund process will be “difficult and lengthy,” adding, “I’m not sure there is a positive end in sight.”
The $1 million production costs –for staging, security and acts, some of whom had already arrived on site when the festival canceled – could not be recouped.
Artists booked for the Playground Weekender included Chic Ft. Nile Rodgers, The Black Lips, Manchester Orchestra and Roots Manuva.
Playground Weekender has run at a loss for the past five years. A Rigby company called Playground Music went belly up in 2007 with debts of $172,000, as did PM Rigby.
Over the 2010-11 period, Playground Agency, Playground Touring and Playground Entertainment were de-registered.