Monday, 18 May 2015

Rumours swirl around Eurorock 'fiasco'

A story is unfolding in the Belgian press related to the 'fiasco' at the Eurorock industrial rock and metal festival which was held held last weekend in Neerpelt (Limburg), with reports that anything up to eighty thousand euros were stolen over the festival weekend (14/15/16 May 2015); that the main organiser Rudi Donckers was admitted to hospital part way through the weekend with heart problems; that a number of bands cancelled; and that the event only actually finished due to the actions of numerous volunteers who took on new roles or worked for free. Other reports, including a report from Het Nieuwsblad, say that attendance levels were well below what was expected with just 2,000 visitors on the Friday and 4,000 on the Saturday with Rudi Donckers telling reporters "Of course I had hoped for a few more thousand." However the official Eurorock website said that weekend tickets had completely sold out.

A number of reports say that police are investigating the theft of 80,000 euros from the event. The theft allegedly took place on Saturday. "The envelopes with money are gone in five minutes" Donckers told Het Nieuwsblad: "The envelopes were backstage in a storage room. Of course I hit panic. I got it straight to my heart." adding "Some say that I am the cashier and that I ran off. I resent that. I immediately informed the police of the theft. I think the sums involved are in order of €45,000. But it can be more."

A number of headliners including Front 242, Fields of the Nephilim, Neon Judgement and Praga Khan cancelled and the event was seemingly initially halted at 13.00 on the Saturday. A spokesperson for the festival Bernard Van Isacker is reported as saying: "We explained to the public that we met a number of practical problems," and Van Isacker added "The whole organization of the festival has been based on the work of volunteers for a day. But some groups have nevertheless agreed to play out of respect for the public". @eurorock_fest tweeted at 16.15 on the 16th "We are running on volunteers now due to circumstances, but the show goes on, thanks to the bands that have agreed to play!" later tweeting "Forget the drama: KILLING JOKE and THERION will play 100% ! This is the Belgian Woodstock!". Peter Hook tweeted that he was having a "chaotic day" in Belgium but that "we did it". The final official tweet to date is "Hi, in order to keep the line open here, I'll continue to tweet with factual info about what happened. Don't shoot the messenger please. - B".

Bernard Van Isacker's blog can be found here

No comments:

Post a Comment