Artists’ protests force Barclays to suspend festival sponsorship

By MediaMonkey

June 14, 2024

Barclays signed a deal in 2023 with Live Nation to sponsor many of the latter’s festivals. That went very wrong this year as a campaign of grass roots artists formed to protest about Barclays, who they deem to support the ongoing assault on the Palestinians via offering financial services.

Brighton’s Great Escape saw over a hundred acts / a quarter of the lineup boycott, and increasing numbers of acts are pulling out of Download, Latitude and the Isle of Wight.

Barclays have now reached a deal with Live Nation to suspend sponsorship and step back, allowing the festival lineups to go ahead. The quotes imply that Live Nation asked Barclays to do this.

Barclays aren’t taking this well, taking a swipe: The only thing that this small group of activists will achieve is to weaken essential support for cultural events enjoyed by millions… It is time that leaders across politics, business, academia and the arts stand united against this.”

Bands Boycott Barclays had a different view: “As musicians, we were horrified that our music festivals were partnered with Barclays, who are complicit in the genocide in Gaza through investment, loans and underwriting of arms companies supplying the Israeli military… Hundreds of artists have taken action this summer to make it clear that this is morally reprehensible, and we are glad we have been heard.”

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