Admit it – you miss Future Music Festival Asia (FMFA). We miss it too. So much so that sometimes, the withdrawal is almost unbearable. So imagine our surprise when we came across this article this morning. We gotta admit that we’ve heard the “word on the street” about chances of FMFA happening again, but we weren’t sure. And now, it seems that there’s a vague confirmation that Southeast Asia’s biggest music festival will be leaving the place where it all began – Malaysia.
To jog your memory, FMFA 2014 at Bukit Jalil National Stadium was abruptly cancelled at the 11th hour on 15th March 2014. It was a shock to all, especially to those who have been faithfully attending the event for the past 3 years (since its inception).
The cancellation was largely due to the deaths that were reported in the media, which led to the calling off of the third day of FMFA 2014, for the sake of the health and safety of all festival goers. Had it not been cancelled, Malaysia would’ve witnessed the biggest music festival there ever was in Southeast Asia, and festival goers would’ve had the opportunity to watch big electronic dance music (EDM) names such as Knife Party, Macklemore, Wu-Tang Clan, Eric Prydz, and more perform live in Kuala Lumpur.
Some for the first time.
As this article has stated, it looks like chances are pretty high that FMFA will be bidding Malaysia farewell. But that’s not to say that we won’t be able to experience a FMFA 2015! Just perhaps not in Kuala Lumpur. We know this because, first and foremost, a source close to the organisers told us exclusively:
If this is true, it’s not surprising that Livescape has made the decision to move FMFA out of Malaysia. I’m sure they’ve tried their best to keep it here but it was out of their hands especially with what happened at this year’s festival. But the government’s reaction like always has always been knee jerk. If you look at the past few months, there hasn’t been any EDM events held in Malaysia because permits are not being issued. Word has it that PUSPAL has banned all EDM-related large scale festivals in the country. That’s just bad for the entire industry. You’re talking about people’s livelihoods and an industry that is worth hundreds of million of ringgit. If you look at a large scale festival like FMFA, which is a huge tourist draw and significantly impacts the local economy, the ones who are at loss when it moves are Malaysians. Brand Malaysia alone will be affected. When word goes out that an internationally acclaimed festival will be moving out of this country because it’s not getting the support it needs from its government, that’s going to affect Malaysia’s brand image. All these while the country is trying to convince foreign investors that Malaysia is a viable country to invest in. In every business, there’s a risk. But do you shut down an entire industry when something goes wrong? For example, there are accidents on the road every day, by the same logic, wouldn’t then it be the right decision to shut down the auto industry?
And if that’s not enough, upon hearing that, we decided to put our investigative journalism to good use and prodded at our friends at Livescape Asia for answers. Because like everyone else, we too are absolutely dying for the lowdown and the real deal on these rumours!
Hence, we rang up Livescape Asia’s Head of PR Jason Kong and pressed him for some deets.
Luckily, he obliged! When asked to confirm the rumours, he said:
Yes, I can confirm that Future Music Festival Asia will not be taking place in Malaysia next year. It was a difficult decision to make because obviously, as a Malaysian company, we were extremely proud to have been able to organise Southeast Asia’s largest music festival in our own home. This was where it all started. The first ever Future Music Festival on foreign soil and it all began in Malaysia. We’ve had 3 great years here with some great partners like Malaysia Major Events who have been nothing but supportive of us in those 3 years. The decision to move FMFA out of Malaysia is one that makes business sense. It’s no secret that the landscape of the industry in this country has changed, but as born and bred Malaysians, Livescape is hopeful that things will change. FMFA will definitely be back home one day.
“And, and, and, more importantly, what about the venue?”, we asked. Because heck, who wouldn’t pay big money for that information!
We’ve got some really exciting plans for FMFA 2015. In fact, it’s going to be our biggest festival yet. But we’re keeping the venue a secret for now. One thing’s for sure, the new venue itself is amazing. We fell in love with it the moment we saw it. Also, Livescape will still be the people behind next year’s edition, so you know it’s going to be an epic party and it will still be held in Southeast Asia so it’s still within reach for Malaysians.
So it looks like they’re definitely moving, but for good reasons. If their portfolio is anything to go by, we know FMFA 2015 is going to be just as amazing if not better! Where do you think it’s going to be held next year? We’ve narrowed down a few venues, thanks to the above sources ;)
Will it be Singapore, essentially Asia’s largest “convention centre”, famed for their entertainment industry? Or Bangkok, having recently seen the light of UMF? How about Jakarta, home to DWP? The possibilities are endless!
And before you throw a fit about the change in venue, just remember that it does say “Future Music Festival Asia” after all, and not “Future Music Festival Malaysia”. Also, the first phase lineup for Future Music Festival (Australia) was just announced! If it’s anything like the previous years, one or more of these artistes might just play at the upcoming FMFA 2015 too:
Too much information? We know, right?
Our take? We can’t wait! Although we don’t have further details, a lil birdie spilled that FMFA 2015 will be announced next month. Hang in there, y’all ;)
We’ll leave you now with a piece of FMFA nostalgia. Enjoy:
For more information, visit Future Music Festival Asia’s Facebook page.