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ATP goes into administration, Iceland festival cancelled

By | Published on Friday 17 June 2016

ATP Iceland

ATP’s live music business has gone into administration and is to shut down, bringing to an end a long series of financial troubles for the tour and festival promoter, best known for its All Tomorrow’s Parties events. This means that the upcoming ATP Iceland festival, due to take place at the beginning of July, has now been cancelled. All other upcoming ATP promoted live shows will go ahead as planned but with alternative promoters, says the company.

In a statement yesterday, the company said: “It is with deep sadness we are announcing that ATP festivals and live promotions are closing down. After months of speculation, our funding for Iceland has been pulled and we are no longer able to continue, so will be closing down the entire live side of ATP festivals and live promotions with immediate effect and going into administration”.

This is not the first time financial problems have driven the ATP company into administration. However, when it happened in 2012 the firm’s upcoming tours and festivals went ahead, transferred to a new company set up by founder Barry Hogan. Its festivals continued to be hit by financial problems though, often resulting in last minute cancellations – most notably 2014’s Jabberwocky festival in London, which was pulled with just three days’ notice.

The latest round of troubles began in March, when the ATP company was unable to meet its financial commitments to holiday camp operator Pontins, which was hosting two planned UK festivals. The first of these, curated by comedian Stewart Lee, did go ahead. However, the second, curated by Drive Like Jehu, was first moved to Manchester and then cancelled with less than a week to go.

When this happened, ATP insisted that its Icelandic event was safe, as it was run by a separate company. However, in the weeks running up to the festival Múm and Blanck Mass announced that they were pulling out, followed by Fabio Frizzi this week – a spokesperson for whom said that this was due to a “lack of communication and the failure to honour any of the agreements”.

A representative for one other artist on the bill also confirmed to CMU that they had withdrawn from the event but not publicly announced this fact, which rumours that others had also done the same. With only 26 acts listed on the event’s website, and day tickets not yet on sale, it increasingly looked like ATP Iceland may not go ahead.

“ATP Iceland festival is no longer happening”, the company confirmed in its statement yesterday. “But all our other UK shows will have new promoters appointed and tickets transferred (all purchased tickets remain valid with the new promoter). We will post details of the administrators and what to do for festival ticket refunds over the next week”.

It concluded: “We are very sorry we could not make this work and have tried to survive throughout all our recent losses but we are no longer able to trade and have to accept we cannot go on. Thank you to all our loyal customers who have supported us and incredible artists who have performed or curated for us over the years and made ATP so special while it lasted”.

ATP’s recordings and music publishing businesses are operated by a separate company and are believed to be unaffected by the live division’s administration.