Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 19/10/2017 (952 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
After three years, Interstellar Rodeo's time in Winnipeg has come to an end.
The August music-and-wine festival is cancelling its 2018 event and will be leaving the Winnipeg market, organizers announced Thursday morning.
The Six Shooter Records-run festival, which brought in massive headliners such as Beck, Father John Misty and Broken Social Scene for the 2017 edition of their Winnipeg event, didn't see the growth they were hoping for in terms of ticket sales due, in part, to the two weeks of free musical programming at the same location at The Forks as part of the Canada Summer Games.
"My staff and I put our hearts and souls into Interstellar Rodeo Winnipeg for three years, as did the many dedicated and wonderful team leaders and volunteers who made this festival the jewel that it was," said Interstellar's producer Shauna de Cartier in an email sent to rodeo bosses (team leaders) late Wednesday afternoon.
"In 2017, we made every effort to ramp up (more than double) our talent and production budgets to achieve the growth targets we needed to make the festival viable. And while we're not a company to shy away from competing against other ticketed events, it's not realistic to expect that we would have been able to achieve these targets when contending with the unexpected challenge and impact of two weeks of free, like-minded programming in the same venue right before our own festival.
"We are very proud of our fantastic years in Winnipeg and grateful to our partners, our sponsors, our volunteers and our loyal patrons for creating so many great memories and good times."
De Cartier confirmed the news to the Free Press, saying though the dates had already been announced for the 2018 festival, the idea of ending the Winnipeg run of Interstellar Rodeo was something her team had been pondering since before the 2017 event.
"We knew the ticket sales going in weren't going to meet our expectations but we wanted to take some time to go through the numbers and really make a decision from a place of knowledge and calmness, so we took our time making the decision," she says.
"It was so great, it was really a special festival I thought, something about the energy of it all really made it seem like a different kind of experience and people loved it. I loved it."
The Edmonton edition of Interstellar Rodeo will continue on as planned for the weekend of July 20-22. To see the full statement from Six Shooter about the cancellation, visit the festival's website.
Erin Lebar is a multimedia producer who spends most of her time writing music- and culture-related stories for the Arts & Life section. She also co-hosts the Winnipeg Free Press's weekly pop-culture podcast, Bury the Lede.
Your support has enabled us to provide free access to stories about COVID-19 because we believe everyone deserves trusted and critical information during the pandemic.
Our readership has contributed additional funding to give Free Press online subscriptions to those that can’t afford one in these extraordinary times — giving new readers the opportunity to see beyond the headlines and connect with other stories about their community.
To those who have made donations, thank you.
To those able to give and share our journalism with others, please Pay it Forward.
The Free Press has shared COVID-19 stories free of charge because we believe everyone deserves access to trusted and critical information during the pandemic.
While we stand by this decision, it has undoubtedly affected our bottom line.
After nearly 150 years of reporting on our city, we don’t want to stop any time soon. With your support, we’ll be able to forge ahead with our journalistic mission.
If you believe in an independent, transparent, and democratic press, please consider subscribing today.
We understand that some readers cannot afford a subscription during these difficult times and invite them to apply for a free digital subscription through our Pay it Forward program.
Updated on Thursday, October 19, 2017 at 1:22 PM CDT: Updates link.