Hong Kong's biggest music festival, Clockenflap, cancelled due to Covid-19

  • The festival was also cancelled in 2019 due to the anti-government protests in the city
  • Glastonbury in the UK and South by Southwest in the US were also scrapped this year
South China Morning Post |

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Sunny Chan of Supper Moment at the Clockenflap 2017 festival. The event has been cancelled for the second year in a row, this time because of Covid-19. Photo: SCMP / James Wendlinger

Hong Kong’s biggest annual music festival has been cancelled for the second year running, with the coronavirus crisis making it impossible to stage this year’s edition, organisers said.
The Clockenflap Festival was to have been held at the Central Harbourfront Event Space over three days in November. Last year’s Clockenflap Festival, at the same venue, was cancelled because of anti-government protests.

In a statement posted to social media, the Clockenflap organisers said: “Due to the dynamic nature of Covid-19 and the effects on international travel, it’s impossible to deliver the depth and breadth of the Clockenflap festival experience we strive for each year.”

However, the statement added that the festival would be returning on November 26-28, 2021. “We are already planning on the biggest and best Clockenflap experience ever for our return.”

Mike Hill, co-founder and CEO of Clockenflap organiser Magnetic Asia, said: “The biggest challenge for us is the uncertainty of international travel. Would artists be able to come without having to spend 14 days in quarantine? There is a strong chance this may not improve before November. That makes it impossible to create the kind of Clockenflap people want.

From Clockenflap to the classroom

“But 2021 will be bigger because we now have a date secured and it’s 18 months away. We have never had that level of venue certainty in the history of the event. That matched with the hunger to perform means our booking team should be in the best position ever.”

No artists had been announced for the 2020 festival and tickets had not gone on sale. The coronavirus outbreak has led to the postponement of most of the world’s biggest music festivals this year, including Glastonbury in the UK and South by Southwest in the United States.

What is now Hong Kong’s biggest annual music festival launched with a small-scale event at Cyberport, a business park and residential development on Hong Kong Island, in 2008 that attracted around 1,500 people. The festival witnessed unprecedented growth after it moved to the West Kowloon Cultural District in 2011 and expanded to three days.

Clockenflap was staged on the Central Harbourfront from 2016 to 2018, when it attracted around 40,000 people on each of its three days.

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