Make Music Pasadena, one of the West Coast’s largest free family music festivals which packed the streets of Old Pasadena with tens of thousands of fans for the past nine years, won’t be staged this year and, its organizers said, may never return.
In a statement late this week, Old Pasadena Management District and the Playhouse District Association, co-producers of the festival, said they have “made the difficult decision to put the event on hiatus for 2017 and to evaluate its future viability.”
Reason? Lack of funding, the producing organizations said, at the same time as costs soared “exponentially.”
Make Music Pasadena faced a $150,000 budget deficit, making it impossible to produce the festival for 2017, the statement said.
Without mentioning this year’s first-ever city-backed Arroyo Seco Weekend by name in this context, the co-producers’ statement hinted the event was financially squeezed out by “a proliferation of local and national music festivals has also made it a challenge to secure both talent and local media attention within a limited budget.”
The Arroyo Seco Weekend’s inaugural festival will be staged this year near the Rose Bowl and will feature entertainment heavy-weights Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Mumford and Sons, Alabama Shakes, The Shins, and Weezer. It is being produced by Goldenvoice, the company which also produces the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, the Stagecoach Country Music Festival and other large music happenings.
Unlike Make Music Pasadena, the Arroyo Seco Weekend is not a free event.
Old Pasadena Management District and the Playhouse District Association, said they “remain hopeful” that sufficient sponsorship might be achieved for a 2018 event and urged “altruistically-inclined white knights” to contact either organization.