Norway’s traditional but troubled music festival “Norwegian Wood” has been cancelled this year, after an attempt to revive it stranded because of poor ticket sales and what its new owner views as an aversion to risk.
Henning Thoresen took over the festival that was held every June at the Frogner Park since 1994. It made a temporary move to the waterfront area behind the Opera House but was due to return to Frognerbadet (the park area where the outdoor swimming pools are located) and run from June 14-16.
Popular Norwegian band Di Derre (which long included author Jo Nesbø), Thåström and Travis were on the program this summer, but now it’s all off according to an announcement on Norwegian Wood’s own Facebook page.
“This is a bad day for us,” Thoresen told newspaper Dagsavisen. “We have struggled with ticket sales and with communicating that the festival was up and going again. Then we fell into an vicious circle of negative liquidity. We decided it was better to cancel in advance, than carry out something that wouldn’t be good.”
Thoresen said he was surprised that so few suppliers were willing to take on the risk of mounting the festival. Most wanted payment in advance, given its history of financial trouble and bankruptcy filing by former owners last year that left creditors filing claims amounting to more than NOK 3.5 million.