Exit Festival has received the green light to go ahead, July 8-11, with a lineup in place of international A-listers.
The mayor of Novi Sad in Serbia, where Exit takes place annually at Petrovaradin Fortress, confirmed that the festival would be open to all those who could prove to have been vaccinated or to have antibodies.
"The presence of antibodies is determined by testing, which is already a common and standard procedure," Exit founder and CEO Dušan Kovačević told Pollstar, adding, "We will work exclusively according to the instructions of the government of the Republic of Serbia, which will specify exactly what type of confirmation is needed."
Everyone else will need to take a rapid antigen test, which will be provided "at low prices, in a specially made area near the festival gates," according to the announcement.
Serbia leads the statistics in Europe when it comes to mass vaccination. It is also the only European country where non-residents can apply for vaccination, Kovačević explained.
"So far, Serbia has vaccinated tens of thousands of foreigners from all over Europe for free and they will continue with this practice," the announcement continues.
The final capacity of what will mark the events 20th anniversary, hasn't yet been confirmed, as it will depend on the developments closer to the early-July dates.
Aside from David Guetta, DJ Snake and Tyga, promoters confirmed DJ Snake, Eric Prydz, Four Tet, Solomun, Boris Brejcha, Paul Kalkbrenner, Nina Kraviz, Honey Dijon, Metronomy, Sheck Wes, Asaf Avidan, Artbat, Meduza, Sabaton, Hot Since 82 and more on the line-up.
Tourists can travel to Serbia with a negative PCR test and promoters expect that testing to enter the country will no longer be a requirement by June.
Exit had already made headlines last year when Serbia's prime minister Ana Brnabic gave the green light for the event to go ahead, but an increase in new daily coronavirus cases rendered all plans void.
Pollstar asked Kovačević what made him sure that a similar faith wouldn't befall the festival in 2021.
"After this pandemic, nobody in the event industry will ever be able to say with 100% confidence that their show will really happen as some new virus can always emerge at any time," he responded.
"However," he continued, "what we can definitely say is that there is a very high probability of Exit happening this summer having in mind that Serbia is among the leading countries in the world with its very successful mass vaccination program and especially as we got the go-ahead from authorities."
Kovačević said, "it's important to notice that even last year during the peak of the pandemic, we managed to realize Life Stream festival with first-class electronic headliners, a live audience and shows, which were viewed over eight million times so far."
He was referring to the series of livestreams realized in partnership with the UN World Food Programme. The recordings took place Sept. 3-6 on the original Exit Festival site in front of a limited audience. It marked the kick-off for Exit's 20th anniversary celebrations, which are supposed to culminate in July, when Exit is scheduled to become the first major international festival of 2021.
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